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Jennifer Meagher RN is the owner of Senior Life LLC, Advocates and  Consultants. Meagher founded and oversees the Better Business Partners  Serving Seniors. She is on the Alzheimer’s Advocacy Committee and has specialized in geriatrics since 1998. She is called on by doctors, attorneys,  and financial advisors to care for their clients and their families. Contact Jennifer  at www.SeniorLifeGCM.com.

 

 

 

Dear Jennifer,

We brought my (84 year old) father out on a picnic and he turned red, complained of a splitting headache and threw up. He looked miserable and his skin was hot. We called an ambulance and they said it was heat stroke. We had him in the shade. We kept offering him drinks, but he wouldn’t take any. Now we all feel terrible. We should have made him drink. Thankfully he recovered nicely, but the doctor said it could have been much worse. Please advise your readers about this problem.

Pam

Dear Pam,

Heat stroke and exhaustion is a big concern for our oldest family members. We need to be very careful, especially for the very young and old in the following situations:
1.    Dry conditions – this is particularly true during a draught, in the desert, and in the winter after the heat has dried out the house. The dryness of the air pulls the moisture out of our bodies.
2. Heat -  
3. Exertion in dry or hot conditions or if perspiration is limited.
4. Dehydration – particularly in any of the above conditions.
5. Direct sunlight – beware: shaded areas, as Pam has demonstrated, are not enough to prevent heat stroke. That said, avoid direct sunlight for elderly – shade is preferred.
6. Sunburn

Anyone over 65 years of age may have conditions or medications which make them more susceptible to heat stroke. Many older folks choose to decline beverages to avoid trips to the bathroom. This is unacceptable in the above situations – drink drink drink. Oh. And did I mention? Avoid alcoholic beverages.

Thank you Pam, for writing about this serious situation. Read on.

Warmly,
Jennifer
 

HEAT STROKE AND HEAT EXHAUSTION

Signs and Symptoms of Heat Stroke
EXTREMELY SERIOUS. CAN LEAD TO DEATH
Warning signs vary but may include the following:
• An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)
• Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
• Rapid, strong pulse
• Throbbing headache
• Dizziness
• Nausea

Signs and Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion
Warning signs vary but may include the following:
• Heavy sweating
• Paleness
• Muscle Cramps
• Tiredness
• Weakness
• Dizziness
• Headache
• Nausea or vomiting
• Fainting
• Skin: may be cool and moist
• Pulse rate: fast and weak
• Breathing: fast and shallow

PREVENT HEAT ILLNESS:
Drink PLENTY of fluids. (If your urine is dark yellow, you are not drinking enough fluid.)
 Stay out of direct sunlight.  
Wear light colored and light weight clothing.
Remain indoors during the heat of the day (generally between 12 noon and 4 PM)
Take a cool shower, or run a damp cool washcloth over your face and neck.
Consider a “Cooling collar” if you wish to attend an outdoor event.
Did I mention you should drink a lot?

TREATING HEAT ILLNESS:
If someone is suspected of heat exhaustion or stroke, TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION.
1. Call an ambulance – follow the instructions you are given by dispatch.
2. Cool the body with cool cloths to the neck, armpits and groin. If the person is running an extreme fever, the cloth will heat quickly, change it out for a cool cloth repeatedly until help arrives.
3. Immerse feet in COOL/COLD water. Do not use icy water.
4. If the situation is extreme work fast: use the garden hose to wet the person to cool him/her. Get him/her in a cool shower or use cool cloths as described above.
5. Have the person drink cool water, unless s/he is partly or fully unconscious. If you have it, sports drinks with electrolytes are best.
 

Rochester

Broken Clouds
74°
76° | 53°
  • Feels like: 74° F
  • Wind: 5mph
  • Humidity: 50%
  • Sat More clouds than sun
    80° | 55°
  • Sun Partly cloudy
    84° | 63°
  • Mon Thunderstorms developing in the afternoon
    82° | 65°
  • Tue Mostly sunny
    84° | 63°

What American Indian tribe is associated with the "Trail of Tears"? (Hint: This tribe was marched from their homes in what is now western Georgia in 1838 to a reservation in Oklahoma.)
A. Cherokee
B. Sioux
C. Nez Pierce
D. Seminole

Brain Workout Trivia is the brainchild of John C Sproul
For more trivia visit www.funtrivia.com!

The correct answer is A. The name "Trail of Tears" was given to the route taken when Cherokee Indians were forcibly removed from their homes in what is now western Georgia in 1838 and marched approximately 1,000 miles to a reservation in Oklahoma. About 4,000 Cherokee died along the way as a result of the march.