Check on the elderly during summer heat

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With temperatures reaching the 90s this week, heat exhaustion can sneak up on young children and the elderly.

"There's a lot of older people that they don't necessarily have a lot of family that comes and checks on them. It makes me nervous when I ring a doorbell and nobody answers," said Elizabeth DeVries, volunteer with Meals on Wheels.

The Meals on Wheels program is organized by the Senior Services of Wichita. The non-profit describes the program as "more than just a meal" because their volunteers provide "a friendly, familiar face at the doors of homebound people every day."

Clients, such as Karen Kruse, agree.

"I appreciate mostly their companionship and their friendship as much as the food, so it's great," said Kruse.

Health professionals with Ascension Via Christi Health have tips to avoid heat exhaustion which is a result of the body beginning to become overheated or dehydrated. 

Symptoms of heat exhaustion may include pale, clammy skin and increased heart rate. If you start to feel fatigued, dizzy, or nauseous, it is important to get into an air conditioned environment and start drinking fluids.

Those most at risk in the heat are infants and toddlers, as well as the elderly. 

DeVries hopes people will think and check on their elderly neighbors and family members.  

"We're not in this world alone. We just need to check on each other and do what we can," said DeVries.

For more information on Meals on Wheels, click here.

To learn more about heat related illnesses, click here.

For ideas to "Help Someone Stay Cool During Extreme Heat," click here.

For tips from AARP on connecting with neighbors, click here.

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