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Sun Safety Tips for Seniors

Sun Safety Tips for Seniors

Sun Safety Tips for Seniors

Spring is finally here. Before you know it, the heat of the summer will be upon us. Everyone needs to take precautions from the sun… and heat. However, it is even more important for senior citizens to do so. Although an excessive amount of sun and heat is not good for anyone, the consequences of overexposure to older people can be severe. Thankfully, there are some easy precautions older folks can take so they can enjoy the sun and warm weather safely. Following these tips can help seniors make sure they stay safe all spring and summer when the sun is at its most intense.

Wear sunscreen

There is no doubt that using sunscreen is an effective way to stay safe in the sun regardless of your age. If you are planning on being outside on a sunny day, make sure to slather on a layer of sunscreen with at least an SPF of 30 before you leave your house. Do not forget to take it with you so you can reapply it whenever you need to.

Keep your eyes protected

Your eye health is important, particularly as you age. The elderly are at a larger risk for blindness if their eyes are not taken care of properly. Prolonged exposure to the sun can be irritating to the eyes and make them deteriorate at a faster rate. Simply wearing sunglasses is an easy step you can take to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and help to preserve your vision.

Make smart clothing choices

What you wear when you are outside in the bright sunlight is important. Do not go for tank tops and shorts that are going to leave your arms and legs exposed to the sunlight. A better option for you is to wear light-colored, lightweight clothing that is loose-fitting. Although it may seem counterintuitive, you are better off wearing a lightweight long-sleeved shirt that protects your skin from the heat rather than leaving your arms exposed. When you are making your summer clothing choices, don’t forget about your head. Wearing a hat goes a long way to keeping you cool and safe in the warm weather. Straw hats are best because they help heat to escape. But, any hat with a wide brim will help to provide some ready-made shade for you.

Avoid strenuous activities

If you want to spend time outside during the warm weather, choose your activities wisely. Spend the time working on your garden or reading a good book. Save tasks that require you to exert a lot of energy for cooler, less-sunny days.

Eat for the weather

If you feed your body right for the weather, you will prepare it for battling the heat. Go light on the protein and opt for a salad or fresh fruit instead.

Keep yourself hydrated

It is essential to keep yourself sufficiently hydrated when you are in the heat and sun. Your best bet is to drink water. But, you can supplement it with other beverages as well. Be sure to avoid alcohol and caffeine, as they will dehydrate you.

Check your medication bottles

If you are taking any medications, it is essential that you check for warnings on the bottles. The efficacy of some medications can be greatly affected by the user’s exposure to sunlight. So, it is important to take extra precautions if you fall into this category.

Stay in touch with friends and family

When you spend time outside the heat can overtake you in just a short amount of time. So, be sure to keep in regular contact with your family and friends. Let others know when you are going outside, especially for an extended period of time. Keep your cell phone with you so you can contact someone quickly if you start to feel overcome by the weather. Also, ask a loved one or friend to check in with you periodically to make sure you are doing okay in the warm weather.

Seek out shade

If you want to spend an extended amount of time outside, be sure to seek out some shade, especially during the hours of 10:00 and 2:00 when the sun is at its hottest and most dangerous. If you cannot find a shady tree or sheltered area, an umbrella works just as well.

Know the signs to go inside

Spending too much time outside in the hot weather can lead to hypothermia. This condition is serious and can lead to heat stroke. The human body exhibits several signs that warn that the condition is taking root. Seniors should be aware of these signs, so they know then it is time to go inside and cool off.

Spend some time inside

It’s okay to spend time outside when the weather is warm, but temper it with some quality indoor time as well. This is particularly important on intensely hot days. For example, after you enjoy the great outdoors on a leisurely walk around the neighborhood, treat yourself to a cold drink that you can enjoy within the confines of your air-conditioned home. If you don’t have air conditioning, go a senior center or someplace else that does.

Seniors can spend time in the sun during the warm weather. But, it is essential that all seniors take precautions, so they stay safe. Any senior who has additional questions about sun safety can contact one of the friendly staff members at Sunshine Retirement Living. We will be happy to provide you with additional information.

To speak with one of your friendly and knowledgeable staff members, click here today.

*This blog was first published here: Sunshine Retirement Living