Hurricane safety for seniors: 3 tips to protect the elderly

how-to-protect-elderly-during-hurricane

Hurricane safety for seniors is of utmost importance, especially in South Florida and areas where folks are vulnerable to catastrophic natural disasters. Younger, more mobile adults can easily pack their bags and relocate to a safe area until a storm passes. But how can seniors stay safe during a hurricane or severe weather storm?

Patients diagnosed with Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease need to take precautions to ensure they are safe during severe storms. Caregivers of Parkinson’s patients should stock an Aware in Care kit in order to educate an emergency responder or health care professional about your elder’s medical needs. While caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients should keep a MedicAlert + Alzheimer’s Association Safe Return, to help patients who get separated from their caregivers.

With Hurricane Dorian expected to hit West Palm Beach overnight on September 2, bringing winds of up to 140 mph and up to 12 inches of rain to surrounding areas like Fort Lauderdale and Miami, folks of all levels of health need to hunker down and ensure their elders are safe. 

Here are 3 hurricane safety tips for the elderly and their families:

1) Secure an extra supply of medications for your senior before a storm

After a hurricane hits, and even days before, it is common for businesses to shut down to prepare for the storm. This means your senior may not have access to a pharmacy for days or even weeks to refill a prescription. For this reason, you should secure up to a month’s worth of necessary medications for your loved one in preparation for a storm.

For medications that require refrigeration, ensure you have a cooler to store those properly. Planning for these cases ahead of time will ensure your elder’s health is protected during severe weather conditions.

2) Ensure a safe living arrangement for your elder during a storm

If your elder lives on their own, it is important to provide them with additional support during a hurricane or severe storm. Whether that means boarding up your loved one’s windows or inviting them into your home until the storm passes, it is important that your senior has proper shelter during this time.

If your loved one receives in-home assistance, they may need a friend or family member to fulfill this role until the storm clears. Private-duty caregivers will report for work only after a storm has passed and it is safe to do so, so plan accordingly to ensure your senior is safe before, during, and after a hurricane. If you are interested in in-home care services year-round, schedule a free consultation at Mind & Mobility to get started.

3) Purchase enough food, water, and other essential items to last a week

People of all ages should prepare for a hurricane by securing plenty of food, water, and other essentials to help get them through a storm. However, the elderly are particularly at risk if enough items are not secured in time.

To ensure your senior is prepared for a storm, secure a week’s supply of water, a week’s worth of non-perishable food items, and batteries to power any medical devices they may use, such as an oxygen system or blood pressure monitor. All of these items will help your loved one weather the storm in a safe and comfortable way.

For more information on hurricane preparedness, visit: https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes

 

 

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