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How To Prevent Heat Stroke In Seniors

Jun 14, 2018 by Lauren Rosa

In home care for seniors can help prevent a heat stroke this summer

While summer is the favorite season of the year for many seniors, allowing them to enjoy nature and spend more quality time outdoors, experts from in home care for seniors point out that it is also a time when a lot of heat injuries happen, which may result in brain damage or even death in the senior population.

There are many heat injuries that can occur in scorching temperatures, but heat stroke is by far the most serious one. It happens when the body overheats, reaching 104 degrees Fahrenheit or even more.

Experts from in home care for seniors strongly advise you to help your loved one reduce their risk of developing heat stroke, as seniors are far more susceptible to the condition than younger adults. Here is how your parent can prevent heat stroke this summer:

  • Consulting with their medical team whether any of the prescribed medications they are using interact badly with heat.
  • Wearing large brimmed hats and loose clothes in bright colors whenever they are leaving their home, even if they are just going out for a couple of minutes.
  • Drinking at least 8 glasses of water per day and carrying a water of bottle with them at all times.
  • Avoiding any kind of physical activity outdoors during peak sun hours, usually between 10am and 5pm.
  • Avoiding alcohol consumption.
  • Keeping their home cool and fresh - they can use air conditioning to achieve optimal house temperature and they should also often open their windows for the air to properly circulate indoors.
  • Spending time in air-conditioned places, such as shopping malls, restaurants, and more.

Taking these precautionary measures can significantly lower the risk of heat stroke in seniors. However, even if your loved one takes all these steps, it is important that you know how to recognize a heat stroke.

According to experts from in home care for seniors, the most common symptoms of heat stroke are nausea, vomiting, difficulty breathing, confusion, disorientation, seizures, flushed dry or hot red skin, and abnormal behavior. If your parent shows any of these symptoms, here is what you should do:

  1. Move your loved one to a place with lots of shade, remove some of their clothes, and freshen them up with cool water to the skin.
  2. Give your loved one cool water to drink if they are conscious.
  3. Measure their body temperature and repeat the two steps above until their body temperature drops to 102 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  4. Call emergency services.

As experts from in home care for seniors emphasize, the quicker your loved one gets help for heat stroke, the lower the chances of any damage it can cause. 

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