Heat tips on how to keep families affected by Alzheimer’s disease safe

As heat indexes have the potential to rise above 110 degrees, it’s important to know how to stay safe from high temperatures.

“Temperatures this high are dangerous for everyone, but especially for someone with Alzheimer’s disease who may be unable to spot the warning signs of trouble or know how to get help,” Charles J. Fuschillo Jr., president of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, said.

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The AFA offers these tips to keep loved ones safe during the heat wave:

  • Help the person stay hydrated
  • Watch for hyperthermia, one life-threatening form is heat stroke
  • Look for signs that something is amiss, including hot, dry skin, rapid pulse, dizziness or sudden changes in mental status
  • Take immediate action, resting in an air-conditioned room, removing clothing, applying cold compresses and drinking fluids can help cool the body
  • Watch out for wandering, it's very dangerous and a common behavior among individuals with Alzheimer's
  • Know where to cool down, many municipalities will open up air conditioned cooling centers where people who do not have air conditioning can go to cool down
  • Plan ahead, blackouts and other power failures can sometimes occur during heat waves
  • Have a long-distance plan if necessary, if you don't live near your loved one arrange for someone who does to check on them

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