Seniors aren’t simply being overly fussy if they complain about being too hot or too cold when you’re perfectly comfortable in the same home. Elderly individuals often have difficulty regulating their body temperature due to age-related changes in metabolism and other processes, which is why it’s important to know what a safe home temperature is for a senior loved one. Suggestions for each season are discussed below.
According to the journal Age and Ageing, a chilly room can negatively affect seniors in less than an hour. Muscle strength can also decrease due to cold, which could increase the risk of falling, according to results from a European study. This is just one of the reasons a cold home can be dangerous for older adults.
The general consensus about a safe winter home temperature for seniors is between 68 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer. Go with a higher setting if your loved one’s home is drafty or if the heating system maintains a consistent home temperature better at a higher setting. Seniors can also stay comfortable and warm at home in winter by:
• Keeping extra blankets or sweaters handy
• Having drafty windows and doors resealed
• Drinking tea and other warm beverages
• Having the furnace inspected and cleaned just prior to the winter months
• Using an electric blanket, since bedrooms and beds tend to be a bit colder in winter
Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality home care service. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your elderly loved one age in place safely and comfortably.
In spring, it’s usually best to stick with what was done in winter until the days start to become warmer. Instead of opening the windows right away, start by turning down the thermostat gradually as the days get warmer. It’s easier to control indoor temperature with better accuracy this way.
Summer presents some unique challenges with home temperature for seniors. On one hand, older adults can be susceptible to dehydration, heat stroke, and other health problems in homes that are too hot and humid. On the other hand, a home cooled too much with air conditioning can be just as dangerous health-wise for the elderly.
The U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting the thermostat at 78 degrees in the summer. However, settings a bit lower can be better if your loved one lives in an area where summers are typically excessively humid and hot. Personal preferences and existing health issues that may also play a role in reactions to heat should also be kept in mind when considering summer temperature settings for indoor spaces. If AC makes your loved one too cold, alternatives on days when it’s not scorching hot or excessively humid include:
• Ceiling or household fans
• Wearing “breezy” clothing
• Opening doors and windows to create a steady stream of cool air
You should also educate your loved one regarding the possible dangers of overheating and dehydration. Living alone at home in the golden years can present a few unique challenges. Trust Clearwater at-home care professionals to help your senior loved one maintain a higher quality of life while he or she manages an illness and performs the daily tasks of living.
The fall is another transition period for seniors’ home temperatures. It’s especially important to maintain a consistent body temperature at night. A good starting point when temperatures start to dip in the autumn is to turn the heat on overnight for your loved one. It can always be turned down during the day when temps go up again.
If your loved one has difficulty maintaining a healthy, comfortable home environment, hiring a professional caregiver can be the ideal solution. For many seniors in Clearwater, FL, live-in care is an essential component of aging in place safely and comfortably. However, it’s important for them to have caregivers they can trust and rely on. At Home Care Assistance, we extensively screen all of our live-in and 24-hour caregivers and only hire those who have experience in the senior home care industry. Our strict requirements ensure seniors can remain in the comfort of home with a reduced risk of injury or serious illness. Home Care Assistance will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Call us today at (727) 330-7862 to discuss how we can give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing your loved one is being cared for with professionalism and compassion.