Aging is living -June 2024

Summertime: Heat and Hydration

Many may be looking forward to the warm breezes and longer days, but as summer approaches the reality of extreme heat, humidity and a glaring sun will become an uncomfortable reality. Tips and strategies to deal with heat and hydration do not change much from year to year, but it is important to have a refresher.

When you consider that water makes up approximately 70 percent of our adult body, there is no doubt that water is essential to our very core. Experts say we could not live more than a week without it. Its very presence in our bodies keeps cells, tissues and organs working, transporting nutrients and oxygen, and flushing out toxins that can cause diseases. It aids in digestion and circulation. Water keeps our skin moist, lubricates our joints, and makes muscles work more smoothly. Water not only affects our physical performance, but our mental performance as well. For all these reasons, it is so important for us to help ensure that our Residents maintain the proper balance of water in their bodies.

With temperatures rising to the mid and upper 90’s during the summer, we need to pay extra attention in hot weather. Our seniors can dehydrate very easily especially being outside in the summer months. Please help to remind our seniors to not wait until they are “thirsty” to decide to drink. Thirst is a sign of dehydration.

Take some time to acclimate as the weather gets warmer. This means that you need to be even more cautious during the first few days of warmer weather or during a heat wave.

Your body needs time to be accustomed to a warmer environment; pace your time outside, be outside during the coolest part of the day (early morning and evening) and drink more water. Edenton residents need to walk early in the day and avoid times when extreme weather is forecasted. Watch for the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke in yourself, our residents, and others.

 

 

Four wheel walker rollator with hand brakes and fold up back sup

Know the signs and symptoms of heat illness, which can become a life-threatening condition without the appropriate response.

HEAT EXHAUSTION:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Weakness
  • Cool, clammy skin ·
  • Fast, weak pulse ·
  • Nausea, vomiting ·
  • Fainting

HEAT STROKE:

 

  • High body temperature (>103° F) ·
  • Hot, red skin
  • Rapid, strong pulse
  • Possible unconsciousness
Aging is living -June 2024

Symptoms of Dehydration

  • Low urine output or concentrated urine
  • Nausea
  • Dry mouth
  • Dizziness or lightheaded
  • Disorientation: person appears confused or lethargic
  • Fatigue
  • Not sweating during activity
  • Hot/flushed
  • Increased fatigue or irritability
  • Rapid loss of weight
  • Constipation

Sun protection – Our Residents who went to the daytime Frederick Keys baseball game yesterday were helped with hydration since it was pretty hot but also applying sunscreen. A wide brim hat can also help to protect our head and face from the sun. Assisted living residents can be helped with a hat from the Life Enrichment Coordinator. Any of us being outside even for a brief time can get a serious sunburn. Our residents thin and fragile skin make this an even more serious problem. Follow the CDC advice and a layer of sunscreen (SPF 15 or higher) on all exposed skin.

Plenty of shaded areas on Edenton’s campus can be enjoyed while staying out of the sun. Enjoy the porches, patios, and breezeways when you want to sit outdoors.

Stay cool and safe this summer. Wear cool and comfortable clothing. Stay indoors when the summer heat and humidity is at its highest each day. Schedule your outdoor time carefully and be active during the cooler parts of the day or evening.

Enjoy the longer days of summer.

 

 

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