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How Seniors Can Avoid Summer’s Most Common Mishaps

School is out and summer vacations have officially gotten underway! Unquestionably, the summertime is one of the most joyous times of the year for people of all ages. For older adults, however, the summertime can be a tough season to navigate. Naturally, the weather is warmer and that can cause some discomfort. That’s just the beginning. There are many common mishaps that can take place during the summer. It’s important for seniors to find ways to avoid them.

Avoid heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

These are two major issues faced by older adults during the summertime. This is because it is harder for their bodies to regulate temperature. It is vital that seniors stay hydrated. That’s the first step. Drink plenty of water throughout each day, even if you’re not thirsty. The second step is to avoid strenuous activities during peak sun hours. We’re talking about 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. You’ll also want to avoid direct exposure to the sun. Finally, wear light, loose-fitting clothing and wide-brimmed hats to keep cool.

Last month, Statistics Canada released a report based on a 20-year data review, between 2000 and 2020. The research found there were about 700 excess deaths attributed to heat in that time span. 230 of them were attributed specifically to heart or lung problems. Toronto and Montreal were the top two ranked deadliest cities during heat waves.

Prevent drowning and water-related injuries.

As reported by Just Like Family Home Care, swimming can actually reduce the risk of falls for seniors. “A recent study showed that the risk of falls declines by 33% over the age of 70 for those who are active swimmers,” their site reveals, “It is believed that swimming not only strengthens the muscles, but improves balance.”

It goes without saying that it’s vital to take precautions while going for a swim. Seniors are advised to use the buddy system. In other words, never swim alone. This is particularly important if you’re swimming in a lake where currents can be unpredictable. As well, wearing a life jacket or other flotation device is highly recommended. You should also take breaks to avoid fatigue.

Be mindful of uneven surfaces.

Naturally, we all like to venture outdoors during the warm and sunny summertime. For older adults who may already be unsteady on their feet, it’s important to look out for uneven terrain. A simple crack in the sidewalk can lead to a nasty fall. Also, be careful of gravel paths and wet grass as they can be slippery. It’s wise to wear sturdy, non-slip shoes that provide good support. Don’t leave home without your cane or walker and be sure to ask for assistance when navigating tricky areas.

Just Like Family Home Care stresses the need to be mindful of slippery surfaces. “Not only are seniors at higher risk of falling, but the injuries sustained in a fall are much more serious for those over the age of 65,” says their website, “Pool areas can be very slippery, so taking precautions is important. Wearing water shoes, ensuring you use handrails, and having a caregiver assist you can help keep you safe.”

With a wheeled walker or rollator, seniors can walk longer distances steadily and safely. The LifeCare Mobility Solutions team would be happy work with you to ensure you get the proper walker or rollator for your needs. Please don’t hesitate to call us at 416-267-9800 or email us at info@lifecaremobility.ca. You may also contact us by filling out the form on our Contact page!

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