Dr. Matthew Bouchard says seniors — especially with chronic medical conditions — and people on certain medications should consult their doctors for specific advice on how they can stay healthy during the early summer heat wave.
Some medicines for high blood pressure, mental health and allergies can impair the process that allows the body to get rid of heat and could put a person at higher risk for heat-related illnesses, Bouchard said.
“There’s also that element of confusion you find in some elderly people when they’re in an extremely hot environment and can’t find the means to get adequately cooled,” Bouchard said. “A lot of the serious heat-related illnesses we see [at Altoona Regional] are people who are in a hot environment and have limited ability to get into air conditioning. So, if you know someone who may be at risk of that, whether it’s a neighbor or a relative, it’s always a good idea to check up on them during these hot days.”