Summer is finally here and most days you will be enjoying time outside. Seniors need to take extra precautions from the sun and heat during the long summer days due to changes in the skin from aging. The consequences of overexposure may be annoying to everyone, but aging skin is affected more severely. Help minimize the impact on Seniors by following sun safety tips during summer months.
Sunscreen is important to protect oneself from the harmful rays of the sun, regardless of age. If you are planning on being outside for any length of time, be sure to apply a layer of sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 before leaving the house. Reapply sunscreen every two hours or as recommended.
Avoid Peak Exposure Times
Prolonged exposure to the sun may result in heatstroke. Locate a shady spot to sit in while outside and escape exposure to direct sunlight. Avoid going outside during peak hours of sunlight, 10 am until 4 pm, when the penetration of the sun’s rays is highest. If outside during those hours, be sure to have enough breaks to prevent heat exhaustion.
Dehydration occurs with long periods of sun. In fact, thirst may not even be noticed until one is already dehydrated. Fortunately, dehydration is easily prevented. Always have water nearby when outside and take sips often throughout the day. If you tend to sweat more, consider energy drinks (with salt and potassium) to replenish the electrolytes lost through body sweat.
The less skin exposed to the sun, the lower chance of sunburn. The best way to prevent sunburn is to cover up when outside. Light and breathable fabrics will block the sun and keep you cool. Look for specific fabrics with UV ratings. Wear sunglasses to protect eyes from the sun’s harsh UV rays. Eyes are sensitive, and the rays of the sun will cause eyes to deteriorate quickly. Hats are an excellent accessory to protect scalps and faces from overheating and being burnt.
The effectiveness of some medications may be affected by the user’s exposure to sunlight. Sun exposure could decrease the body’s natural shield against the sun. Take extra precautions if you or your Senior find warnings on medication bottles pertaining to the sun.
Know the Signs
Spend time outdoors safely. Hypothermia often results from enjoying too much time outside in the hot weather. Hypothermia is serious and may lead to heatstroke. Seniors need to be aware of these signs and recognize when to go inside and cool off.
Pace Outdoor Activities
Strenuous activities such as sports or hiking should be avoided during peak hours. Alternate between shade and sun to give your body a break from direct sunlight. Inform friends or family you are going outside by yourself and be in contact with them. Others need to react quickly if you are overwhelmed by the heat.
Seniors can enjoy spending time in the sun during warm weather but it is essential all Seniors follow sun safety tips and take precautions to protect themselves. Bridge to Better Living will help to find communities where sunshine is enjoyed every season. Courtyards for walks and simply listening to the sounds of Mother Nature are opportunities found in many Senior Living Communities. Visit with the experts at Bridge to Better Living. Transition Consultants will pay attention to your personal needs and wants. Enjoy the sunshine. Call Bridge to Better Living today.