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SCAN Health Plan Arizona Encourages Sun Smarts and Plenty of Water for Seniors This Summer
Date:6/8/2009

PHOENIX, June 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Summer can be a fun time of year, but it also poses additional risks - especially for seniors. SCAN Health Plan Arizona encourages area seniors to take extra precautions this season with these six tips:

  1. Prevent sunburn. Applying sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher, 30 minutes prior to going out, everyday. Reapply every two to four hours, more frequently after swimming. The sun's rays are the most harmful between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., during which time exposure should be limited.
  2. Stay hydrated. A normal result of aging is a reduction in the sensation of thirst, which allows seniors to become dehydrated more easily. Dehydration can lead to confusion and falls. So keep plenty of cool water on hand and avoid beverages containing alcohol or caffeine.
  3. Don't get overheated. People have a harder time adjusting to higher temperatures as they age. Even temperatures in the low 90s can be deadly for seniors. To prevent heat-related illness, such as heat stroke, keep the thermostat set below 85 degrees and use personal or ceiling fans to cool the room.
  4. Protect against insect bites. Bugs are attracted to bright colors, scented soaps, perfumes, uncovered food and stagnant bodies of water. Insect repellents containing DEET are the most effective in keeping insects away. If you do get stung, the best way to remove a visible stinger from skin is to gently scrape it off horizontally with a credit card or fingernail.
  5. Travel safely. Keep supplies such as water, snacks and a first-aid kit in the car at all times. Keep a list of your medications and physicians' names and phone numbers in your purse or wallet. Always wear your seatbelt.
  6. Know the signs of heat stroke. If you develop a flushed face, headache, nausea, rapid pulse, dizziness or confusion, seek immediate medi
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SOURCE SCAN Health Plan Arizona
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