Hot Sunshine Tips

Sunshine heat in FloridaHere in South Florida (a.k.a. Paradise) the Summer Sunshine is already beating down, mixed with humidity. Learn safety tips, especially for older adults and seniors so that they do not get heat stroke or dehydrated which can lead to other health problems. Learn to enjoy the summer, safely.

As severe as the winter was up North, it is feeling a lot like summer here in South Florida sunshine where we are reaching into the 90s frequently and it is only May. Summer Sun can be particularly unforgiving and dangerous to older folks and the elderly. We enjoy our time outdoors – in the pool, walking along the beach or in a park, playing golf or tennis, riding bikes etc., but we must change our times to early morning or early evening to enjoy these activities, safely. The old adage is to stay indoors between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. – the heat of the day.

Sunlight is a good way to absorb vitamin D but that only requires about 15 minutes.  Being out in the sun can cause Sunburn to sensitive skin. As we age, our skin becomes thinner and starts pigmentation loss, so we are even more exposed to the sun and damage it can cause. The older you are, the less pigmentation in your skin thereby, less protection.

Safe Ways to Enjoy the Outdoors in summertime:

Stay indoors from late morning till late afternoon– the hottest time of the day.

Wear a hat, Sunglasses and be liberal with lots of 30 or higher SPF sunscreen or sunblock from top of bald head to tops of feet.

Carry water with you and drink often to remain Hydrated.

Wear light colored clothes that are loose fitting and not constricting. Cottons are best.

Use the air conditioning in the car and home when it is over 85 degrees.

Walk in an air conditioned place like the Mall or in a gym.

If you do suffer a severe burn with blisters, see your doctor quickly. Do not pop blister yourself – don’t risk infections. Remind older parents, all retirees that the sun in Florida is very strong. If a loved one has a caregiver or aide, remind them of these tips before taking your loved one outside. If your parent has dementia, do not let them remain outside too long on their own. They will not know to drink water or when to come in.

Check with the Pharmacist about Medications which may need refrigeration this time of the year and which may not be well suited for being outdoors too long in the hot sun.

Other risks of being out in the hot summer sun are headaches, dehydration, sunstroke, nausea and fainting. You can control all of this by respecting our Tropical HOT sun and follow safety tips. Eat more fruit and vegetables which help in staying hydrated and drink lots and lots of water.  If you think your elder loved one needs help, consider hiring a companion for health care.

If you are out in the sun and begin feeling weak and even throwing up. Call your doctor or go to an Emergency walk in cline or the hospital.