YAKIMA, WA - In a heatwave, it's important to check on our seniors to keep them safe. Make sure they have an air conditioner where they live, have fun indoor activities to partake in, and plenty of water.
"People don't want to be cooped up inside especially with nice weather but our memory care doesn't fully understand the repercussions of being outside," said Community Relations Coordinator, Mandy Ketcham.
At the Highgate Senior Living Center in Yakima, every resident has an A/C unit in their room, a hydration cup, and can partake in indoor activities like exercise classes and mind games.
"If we’re active, we are thirsty. so giving them purpose because a lot of times in this weather, they want to be outside gardening, and it's not safe for them," said Ketcham.
The idea is to get these seniors thirsty because, in the heat, hydration is key said Ketcham. Every resident has a hydration cup that they can refill at any time and as many times as they please.
"It's cold water, we are constantly refilling them," said Ketcham.
As we age, our peripheral vision gets smaller, so it's important to keep water right in front of them at all times said Ketcham.
She said you should also never ask if they want water because typically the answer is no.
"Instead of saying do you want some water, say ‘I’m going to get us some water and we’re going to drink it together,’ said Ketcham.
If regular water isn't enough, Ketcham said adding other fluids like flavored water, Gatorade, or tea to add taste.
If drinking fluids isn't always best, seniors with digestive or urinary problems, can eat fruit with high water content or eat popsicles to stay cool.