One Senior's Opinion: Seniors should play it cool this summer
Summer's heat has struck this area with a vengeance. Senior citizens are especially vulnerable to high temperatures and high humidity. Health care professionals recommend seniors stay indoors when the temperature hits the high 70s or above. Some seniors might not tolerate summer temperatures even lower than that.
If you must go out into the heat, the safest times are early morning or late evening. It's certainly not fun to stay home when the sun is shining. Perhaps you can hitch a ride with Bay Senior Transportation to visit the Dwyer Center. The building is air-conditioned, plus there are many activities available. You can play Scrabble, work on puzzles, play cards, take in a movie on Tuesday afternoons, read a book or just relax. Grab a few friends and enjoy the coolness of the Dwyer Center.
Other tips to stay cool and healthy are:
- Stay hydrated. Drink lots of water and other liquids.
- Wear light, loose clothing.
- Use sunglasses when outdoors.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables. These foods contain water and will help keep you hydrated.
- Keep the air indoor circulating. Use air conditioning or fans.
- Don't use your oven for cooking.
- If you live alone, have a friend call you once or twice a day to see how you're doing.
If you are in need of an air conditioner or fan, contact the Council for Economic Opportunities in Greater Cleveland at 216-518-4014 or www.ceogc.org for information about their Summer Cooling Program. If you meet income guidelines you might qualify for up to $250 toward a room air conditioner, fan or help with your electric bill. If your household includes one member over 60 years old or someone who has COPD or asthma, it's worth looking into.
With the remainder of the summer to look forward to, it makes sense to be aware of weather conditions. An ounce of prevention is well worth it. Have a safe, healthy and happy summer.
Dianne Borowski lives in Bay Village.