More senior citizens are moving in with their adult children than ever before. In fact, the number of elderly family members living in their children’s homes has doubled since 1995, according to AARP. This move toward at-home elderly care further stresses the need for Healthy Air.
Dry Air Strongly Impacts Elderly Family Members
Just as you’d prioritize creating a Healthy Home environment for your children, creating healthy living conditions for at-home elderly should be at the top of your list as well – particularly in dry, cold climates.
We already know that dry air can lead to:
• Dry and Itchy Skin
But how does dry air affect us as we age?
Prevention of Airborne Diseases Factor of At-Home Elderly Care
From a general standpoint, dry air has been shown to increase the spread of flu viruses, which can affect everyone in your home. For senior citizens, recovering from the flu is tougher than those with stronger immune systems. In fact, the flu can possibly even turn into pneumonia, which could have serious repercussions.
Additionally, elderly family members with asthma and COPD – or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – can experience lung spasms due to cold, dry air.
Even on a basic level, older generations are more susceptible to dry, flaky skin that can be uncomfortable, leading to cracking and chapping. This is may not seem as detrimental as the above examples, but itchy skin can certainly impact the quality of life for everyone in your home.
The effects of dry air are particularly worse in cold climates, often for one simple reason: furnaces.
In cold areas where the air is already dry, heating systems need to be used to heat the home. The problem is that furnaces also tend to further dry out the air, leading to arid environments and sick families.
Encourage your elderly loved ones to:
- Take advantage of available flu vaccines to prevent complications
- Wear thick scarves that add moisture to the air they breathe
- Reduce hot showers that can dry out skin
- Moisturize often to reduce cracked or chapped skin
- Hydrate as often as possible to keep their bodies in top shape
- Use a whole-home humidifier to quell the effects of dry air
Moisture in the presence of dry air is beneficial for the whole family.
“The best way to keep the air in your home from getting too dry is by running a humidifier.” – Synergy Home Care
Per the EPA, aim to keep the humidity in your home between 40% and 60% year-round to help your elderly loved ones breathe easy.
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If you’re in need of an AprilAire whole-home humidifier for at-home elderly care, take the first step toward a happier, healthier home by having a certified professional assist you, or learn more about Healthy Humidity and its effect on our health.