Poolside Safety for Elders

Swimming is a fantastic activity for seniors during the summer. Not only is it the perfect way to stay cool on these hot Chicago afternoons, but it is a great for maintaining an active lifestyle, especially for those with joint issues. The low-impact exercise has been shown to improve flexibility, range of motion, and stability.

While getting in the pool is a great way to enjoy the summer, keep in mind these poolside safety tips for elders to ensure that everyone stays safe while having fun.

Monitor the Water and Air Temperatures

While the air temperatures might be rising, Lake Michigan is still 59 degrees. A community swimming pool wouldn’t be quite so cold, but it is still important to check the temperature before getting in. Especially in the case of seniors, water even a few degrees cooler than one’s natural body temperature can result in hypothermia. When out of the water, watch for signs of overheating.

Be Mindful of Slippery Surfaces

Senior citizens are already more likely to experience a serious slip and fall on dry land. Wet surfaces make that danger twice as prevalent. Take your time as you enter the pool area and walk around the perimeter of the water. Consider wearing sandals or other footwear that have more traction than bare feet. Be mindful of any toys or tools that may be lying about.

If you have a personal pool, consider investing in removable pool fencing sides, pool safety nets, or pool safety covers to keep you and your loved ones safe when not enjoying the water.

Don’t Swim Alone

While having the pool all to oneself might seem appealing, it isn’t a good idea. If an issue arises while one is alone, it is a recipe for accidental drowning. Swim with a buddy so that, on the off chance that something happens, the buddy can alert others. This is especially important when swimming with a senior with dementia.

Check with Your Doctor Before Jumping In

Those with vulnerable immune systems or other health conditions may want to consider where they’re swimming. Untreated or crowded water may not be the best idea for these individuals. Another thing to consider is medications. Some advise against extended periods in the sun, and others can cause drowsiness. Keep this in mind as you make your pool plans.

Learn CPR

In or out of the pool, CPR is a valuable skill to have. It may be necessary for someone after experiencing a poolside accident, a head injury, or cardiac arrest. It can save lives and give you peace of mind.

Our in-home care workers will be there to help ensure that your loved ones have a great summer. Our staff can take over errands, meal preparation, light cleaning, and other activities that may be difficult for some seniors. Call us at to learn more.

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