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Beat the Heat: 5 Hot Weather Safety Tips for Seniors

Summer is the perfect time to get out and enjoy the outdoors, even in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. There’s no better place to socially distance than in nature! However, summer heat and prolonged sun exposure can be dangerous, especially for vulnerable populations like children and older adults.

Hot weather can cause many potential health risks like heat exhaustion, heatstroke, dehydration, and, in severe cases, death. In order to stay safe and enjoy your summer, follow these five hot-weather safety tips.

5 Tips to Beat the Heat

1. Plan your day. Before making any plans to be outdoors for long periods, take a look at the forecast. While you may be worried about rain, you should also check to see what the high temperature is going to be for the day and keep an eye on the heat index or any air quality alerts. If you can, also try to avoid too much outdoor activity during peak sun. Plan activities in the morning before 10 a.m. or in the evening after 4 p.m. when the sun isn’t as hot.

2. Protect more than just your skin. Be sure to always apply sunscreen to your body AND face. Use a sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher that blocks UVA and UVB rays at least 15 minutes before heading outdoors. Don’t forget to protect your eyes while you’re at it! Sun exposure can cause damage to your vision, so throw on your favorite sunglasses.

3. Dress cool (and we don’t just mean stylish). Wear light-colored clothes that aren’t too tight to help keep your body cool in the heat. If you’re looking for the perfect summer accessory, a hat is a perfect way to shield your face from the sun, too.

4. Know your risks and how to handle them. You should always check with your doctor to make sure you’re not on medications that may make you more prone to danger. If you plan to be outside, have an emergency contact ready and know the signs of heat-related illness. Warning signs include dizziness, nausea, rapid heartbeat, chest pain, or breathing problems.

5. Stay hydrated! Drinking water is one of the easiest ways to keep your body healthy, especially in the hot summer months. Even if you aren’t thirsty, make sure you’re drinking plenty of water. The average adult should strive to drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day.

Drink up at Friendship Village Columbus

Not sure you’re drinking enough water? Join our water challenge for a fun way to make sure you stay hydrated this summer! If you complete the challenge by September 7th, 2020, you could be entered to win one of four $25 Amazon gift cards!* Join the challenge here.

Looking for a place you can enjoy the summer (and the rest of your retirement)? Check out Friendship Village Columbus. Schedule a virtual tour here.

*Contestants must be 65 or older and a resident of the Columbus metropolitan area. Completed water challenges must be mailed in or dropped off to Friendship Village Columbus (5800 Forest Hills Blvd, Columbus, OH 43231) by September 7th, along with name and contact info, in order to be considered eligible. For questions, email lmiller@fvcolumbus.org or call 614-568-0503.