Extreme heat advice
On this page
- During very hot weather, you have a greater risk of getting sick.
- Some people may experience the effects of hot weather more than others.
- It’s important to know what these effects are, who is at risk and what you can do.
- Heatstroke is a medical emergency.
- Get treatment straight away.
Extreme heat risks for older people
You may have a greater risk of heat-related illness if:
- you live alone
- have a medical condition
- take certain medicines
- are frail
- can’t move easily
- have dementia
- have a mental illness.
Caring for an older person during extreme heat
- Check on an older person twice a day during extreme heat. Especially if they live alone.
- Visit them if you can, rather than just talking on the phone.
- Ensure they are drinking enough water
- Look for any changes to their physical condition.
- Have plans to keep them cool if there is a power failure.
- Check if their phone and safety alarm pendant work if there is no electricity.
- It is very important to take care of yourself too.
Heat-related symptoms in older people
Lookout for symptoms of heat-related illness such as:
- increased thirst
- feeling dizzy or faint
- muscle spasms or cramps
- loss of appetite.
What to do if they have heat stress
- Help cool them down straight away.
- Use cool baths or showers, or place cool, wet towels on their neck and underarms.
- Call a doctor or an ambulance (000) if their condition does not improve within an hour.