Are you and your family enjoying the arrival of summer, with the longer days, cherished moments with aging loved ones, family cookouts, and refreshing swims at the pool or beach? Summer does bring lots of delight, but along with its pleasures for all family members, you and your family need to remain vigilant about a potential hazard in Florida. Because of  the soaring temperatures, our aging loved ones are more susceptible to heat-related illnesses and can be at risk.

Keeping our senior family members safe during the summer months is extremely important, and while heat is a significant concern, it is not the only one we need to be aware of. To help seniors fully enjoy the summertime with their families, we want to share must-have heat safety tips for seniors in the summer right here in our blog.

1. Seniors must stay hydrated. You and your family need to be sure that the seniors in your family drink plenty of fluids, even if they do not feel thirsty. Offer them water, fruit juices, and electrolyte-rich beverages. At the same time, be sure to limit their consumption of caffeine and alcohol, as they can contribute to dehydration.

2. Seniors must beat the heat. Be sure that seniors in your family have access to air conditioning or fans to keep their living spaces cool. If your senior loved ones lack air conditioning at home, suggest visiting public places with cooling systems, such as shopping malls or community centers, during the hottest parts of the day. They should limit outdoor activities during the hottest hours of the day, usually between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Encourage elders to schedule outdoor ventures in the cooler morning or evening hours. When they are outside, guide them to find shaded areas or use umbrellas to protect them from direct sunlight, reducing the risk of sunburn and overheating.

3. Seniors may need assistance with medication management. Be aware of any medication management needs and inquire about any prescriptions that may increase sensitivity to the sun or affect hydration levels. Be sure your senior loved ones are aware of these effects and consult their healthcare provider if necessary. Offering assistance with pill organization or pharmacy delivery can be a valuable support.

4. Seniors need to have a hurricane plan. When summer arrives in Florida, so does the hurricane season. It is important to have discussions about evacuation plans with seniors. Consider options like relocation to a family member’s home in a different area and identify the person in charge of evacuation, should it become necessary.

5. Stay connected with your senior loved ones. You and your family should regularly check in on your senior loved ones, especially those who live alone. Ensure they have a way to contact someone in case of emergencies and provide them with essential phone numbers, including their healthcare provider and local emergency services.

6. Be sure to check that your senior loved ones have their Florida estate planning completed and that it is up-to-date. Make sure that your aging loved ones have a Florida estate plan. Verify that they have designated a person to act on their behalf in case of incapacity or a crisis. Be sure this person is aware of their nomination and willing to fulfill the role. Additionally, make sure there is a comprehensive Florida estate plan in place, which plays a crucial role in ensuring the seniors’ safety and well-being throughout the year.

As we delve into these essential summer safety tips, we understand that you may have further questions. Planning for the future is critical to ensure that your goals for the end of life are achieved. We know this article may raise more questions that it answers.  We do telephone, computer, and face-to-face appointments. Our face-to-face appointments are held outside in the open air (frequently selected by clients for document signing) and inside our office conference room. We follow all CDC guidelines. Our office procedures adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols and are designed and enhanced by medical review and air quality engineering.