5 Warning Signs an Older Adult Is Experiencing Heat Stroke

By Keith Davis, 9:00 am on June 26, 2017

The summer season is a good time for your senior loved one to travel, go outside, and spend time with grandchildren. However, too many outdoor activities can make him or her susceptible to heat exhaustion. If your senior loved one experiences the following symptoms, he or she may be at risk of heat stroke.

1. Behavioral Changes

Pay close attention to your loved one’s behavior when he or she is outside on a hot sunny day. Confusion or disorientation that is out of the ordinary could be a sign of heat stroke. Having your loved one answer simple questions is one of the best ways to observe behavioral changes.

Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional in-home care. Green Valley, Arizona, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

2. Changes in Breathing and Heartbeat

Observe the way your senior loved one is breathing when out in the sun. Shallow breathing and rapid heartbeat may be signs of heat stroke. Take your loved one’s pulse if you suspect he or she is experiencing heat exhaustion.

3. Hot Skin

When your loved one experiences heat stroke, his or her skin may feel warm to the touch or appear red or dried out. If you have a thermometer, take his or her temperature. Anything over 103 degrees Fahrenheit or 39 degrees Celsius should be considered a medical emergency.

4. Muscle Weakness

You may notice your loved one feeling weaker than usual, having difficulty standing and holding objects, or complaining of muscle cramps. If the muscle weakness becomes unbearable, help your loved one sit in a cool and shady area.

Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Green Valley, Arizona, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.

5. Nausea

Vomiting, fainting, and seizures are some of the most common signs of heat exhaustion. If your loved one feels nauseous in the summer heat, it is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Help your loved one prevent heat stroke by:

  • Making sure his or her home is cool and ventilated during the summer. Have the AC fixed or replaced if necessary, be sure windows are open, and buy a fan.
  • Making sure he or she has summer clothes.
  • Encouraging him or her to stay hydrated and keeping his or her home stocked with water and juice.
  • Encouraging him or her to spend time outside either before 10am or after 3pm to avoid the hottest hours of the day.
  • Making sure he or she stays in the shade, wears cool clothing, and has access to other ways to cool down.

Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Green Valley seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more. To create a customized care plan for your aging loved one, call Home Care Assistance at 520-625-2050 today.

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