Summer is the season to enjoy the outdoors. After being cooped up in the house all winter long, it is refreshing to venture outside and enjoy the warmer weather with friends and family. From family cookouts or tending to your garden to spending the day at the pool or on the beach, summer is the time to have fun in the sun!
However you choose to enjoy the summer months, it is still important to stay safe. There are health risks that come with spending too much time in the summer heat, especially for older adults.
As a senior living provider in Tennessee and West Virginia, health and safety are our number priorities. To help you enjoy this season more safely, The Pavilion Senior Living is sharing six essential summer safety tips!
#1 Stay Hydrated
Our number one summer safety tip is to continuously hydrate your body. As we age, our ability to store and conserve water decreases, making it crucial to ensure you are getting enough water, especially during the hotter months.
It is recommended that aging adults drink at least eight cups of water per day, but sports drinks and clear juices can also help you stay hydrated. Additionally, water-rich foods, like watermelon, for instance, are great choices and can help replenish your body’s water supply.
When possible, avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol, as these can actually lead to dehydration.
#2 Dress Appropriately
Stay cool and avoid getting sunburned by wearing the appropriate attire for a day in the sun. Loose-fitting clothes that are light in color are great options for keeping you cool. Top off the look with a wide-brimmed hat to keep the sun out of your eyes and off your face.
#3 Wear Sunscreen
Sunscreen is your friend. Nothing is worse than spending a nice, relaxing day at the beach only to return home and discover that you closely resemble a lobster. A sunburn can have damaging long-term effects on the skin, but treating your sunburn is also not a pleasant experience.
Avoid the hot, painful sunburn by remembering to apply and reapply a broad-spectrum sunscreen of at least SPF 30 or higher whenever you are exposed to the sun.
#4 Preserve Your Vision
The sun’s rays are powerful. In addition to burning the skin, the sun can also irritate and cause damage to your vision if you are not cautious. By wearing sunglasses, you can preserve your vision and protect your eyes from the sun’s UV rays. Your wide-brimmed hat will help keep the sun out of your eyes too!
#5 Avoid Peak Heat Times
Temperatures rise and fall throughout the day, so it is important to look ahead for what time of the day you will be outside. If possible, aim to do your outdoor summer activities, like tending to your garden, during the morning or evening hours. By doing so, you can spend time pursuing your hobbies without battling as much of the heat.
We know that not everything can be accomplished in just the morning or evening hours. Part of the summer fun is spending the whole day outside with friends and family. If you are out during the peak heat times of the day (typically between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.), seek shaded areas to help you stay cool.
#6 Know the Warning Signs of Heat Stroke
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “heatstroke is the most serious heat-related illness. It occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature: the body’s temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to cool down.”
A crucial summer safety tip is to know the warning signs of a heat stroke so you can prevent hyperthermia and seek prompt medical assistance if it is affecting you.
Warning signs of a heat stroke include:
- Inability to sweat
- Heavy breathing
- Vomiting or nausea
- Confusion or agitation
- Dry, flushed skin
The summer season is all about enjoying the warmer weather and spending time with friends and family. While you are having fun in the sun, implement these summer safety tips to have a safe and happy season!
For more tips and information about senior living in Tennessee and West Virginia, contact The Pavilion Senior Living or visit our website.