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In 2003, 35% of heat wave deaths occurred in the home - let's protect the elderly.




protecting the elderly from heat
protecting the elderly from heat

Elderly people's health is at risk during the scorching summer heat

Indeed, high temperatures can cause a range of ailments, from mild ailments such as heatstroke, to more serious consequences such as death, particularly in this more vulnerable population. One of the main factors in the oppressive heat that can affect the elderly is lack of hydration.


Watch for warning signs of hyperthermia

As we age, our bodies often have difficulty regulating their normal temperature. This means that the elderly are more likely to suffer from dehydration. Dehydration is a major problem, as it leads to a reduction in the amount of water in the body, affecting its normal functioning. When outside temperatures and humidity are high, the risk of dehydration is even greater. This can lead to severe discomfort such as headaches, dizziness, weakness and muscle cramps.


Hyperthermia is a condition in which a person's body temperature rises above normal, usually due to excessive exposure to heat or a malfunction of the body's temperature regulation system. This can occur as a result of intense exercise, prolonged exposure to high temperatures, overdressing or dehydration.


Protecting the elderly from scorching heat is important

Dehydration is not the only problem caused by extreme heat in the elderly. Because of their reduced ability to regulate body temperature. They are also more likely to develop heatstroke. Which can be very dangerous. Heatstroke occurs when body temperature reaches dangerously high levels, endangering the lives of the elderly. Symptoms can include confusion, headaches, nausea, vomiting and even loss of consciousness. It is therefore extremely important to take precautions to protect the elderly from the scorching heat and its serious consequences.


Here are a few steps you can take to prevent these problems:

Drink water regularly, even when you're not thirsty, and avoid sugary drinks, coffee and tea, which encourage dehydration.

Refresh yourself several times a day by wetting your body and face with a spray bottle or damp cloth.

Take lukewarm showers or baths to lower body temperature.

Wear light, loose-fitting, light-colored clothing that lets air through and wicks away perspiration.

Stay in the shade and avoid physical exertion, especially during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.).

Air rooms early in the morning or late in the evening when it's cooler, and close curtains during the day to limit heat loss.

Use a fan or air conditioner if possible, making sure that the temperature difference between indoors and outdoors is not too great (no more than 5°C).

Watch for warning signs of hyperthermia, such as headaches, muscle cramps, unusual fatigue, confusion or loss of consciousness. When in doubt, call Info-Santé 811 or consult a healthcare professional.


Here are a few steps you can take to prevent these problems:

Drink water regularly, even when you're not thirsty, and avoid sugary drinks, coffee and tea, which encourage dehydration.

Refresh yourself several times a day by wetting your body and face with a spray bottle or damp cloth.

Take lukewarm showers or baths to lower body temperature.

Wear light, loose-fitting, light-colored clothing that lets the sun shine through.

Offer water-rich fruits: watermelon, citrus fruits, grapes and especially frozen grapes, a real treat! Refreshing 😊

Offer a cold soup, cool drink, smoothie, juice diluted in water, iced tea or cold herbal tea. Offering ice cream, an ice cream cone or sorbet can be a delicious option. On hot days, it's important to choose foods that are light enough to keep you cool.

If you need more information on the effects of heat on health, you can consult these websites:

Health effects of heat | Government of Quebec (quebec.ca)



In conclusion, water consumption is essential for good brain health at all times. Not only does it help improve concentration and memory, and prevent age-related cognitive disorders. It also promotes good blood circulation and temperature regulation, and improves mood. So it's vital to encourage the elderly to maintain adequate hydration to preserve their precious brains and quality of life.


Discover our services for people with neurocognitive disorders: https://www.serviceshuma.com/services-aide-a-la-personne

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