Heat & Older Adults
People aged 65 years or older are more prone to heat-related health problems. If you’re an older adult or a caregiver, review this post for information on how you or the person you’re caring for can stay safe during the heat.
WHY ARE OLDER ADULTS MORE PRONE TO HEAT STRESS?
Older adults do not adjust as well as young people to sudden changes in temperature.
They are more likely to have a chronic medical condition that changes normal body responses to heat.
They are more likely to take prescription medicines that affect the body’s ability to control its temperature or sweat.
STAY COOL, STAY HYDRATED
Stay in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible. If your home doesn’t have air conditioning, contact your local health department or locate an air-conditioned shelter in your area.
Do not rely on a fan as your main cooling source when it’s really hot outside.
Drink more water than usual and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
If your doctor limits the amount of fluids you drink or has you on water pills, ask them how much you should drink during hot weather.
Don’t use the stove or oven to cook—it will make you and your house hotter.
Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
Take cool showers or baths to cool down.
Do not engage in very strenuous activities and get plenty of rest.
Check on a friend or neighbor and have someone do the same for you.
Follow additional tips on how to prevent heat-related illness.
Check the local news for health and safety updates.
Seek medical care immediately if you have, or someone you know has, symptoms of heat-related illness like muscle cramps, headaches, nausea or vomiting.
Keep a close eye on those in your care by visiting them at least twice a day, and ask yourself these questions:
This article was provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.