With a Met Éireann yellow status warning in place from 11am Thursday until 9pm on Friday, 29th June, ALONE are urging older people to avoid direct sunlight for extended periods and to stay well hydrated.
As temperatures are reaching record highs, it’s important that older people, families and wider communities understand the potential health impacts of the heat. ALONE has tips for older people to take care in the warm weather:
- Avoid too much direct sunlight. Try to keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm, when the sun is at its strongest.
- Wear a high factor sunscreen with both UVA and UVB protection. If you have one, wear a hat to protect your head.
- Take time to rest.
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, even if you don’t always feel thirsty. Older people’s receptors for thirst are less keen, so they can go for extended periods without feeling the need to drink, even if they’re verging on dehydration.
- Wear light, loose-fitted clothing.
- If you drink a lot of tea and coffee during the day, try to drink water instead.
- Keep your living space cool by closing curtains and windows which receive the sun, and turn off non-essential electrical appliances.
- Prescription medications can reduce your ability to tolerate the heat. Monitor yourself more closely and take extra care to stay cool.
- Watch out for symptoms such as feeling faint or short of breath, and get help if you feel unwell. Contact your doctor or a pharmacist if you are worried, especially if you’re taking medication, if you feel unwell or have any unusual symptoms.
- Keep a small drum of water in the refrigerator in the event that water pressure is significantly reduced or restricted. Fill up your kettle, pots and pans with water. If you notice a significant drop in water pressure, contact Irish Water on 1850 278 278.
- As more information is released on falling water supplies from Irish Water, ALONE also encourages families and neighbours to check in with older people and ensure they have enough water to provide for the coming days.
For more tips, see the HSE website. For those who have concerns about their own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of a vulnerable older person in the community, ALONE can be contacted on (01) 679 1032. If you have an issue with your water supply, contact Irish Water on 1850 278 278.