As kids get back to school, your parents know they’ll be spending more time by themselves. School activities kick into high gear, and you need to help them with homework, too. Labor Day seems like the perfect day for everyone to visit their parents and spend the day together.
If you’re planning a Labor Day gathering, you have to focus on safety. A lot can go wrong during a fun afternoon, but it doesn’t have to with a bit of planning.
Keep Food Safety in Mind
When you’re having a gathering, food safety needs to be a priority. Older adults may not have as strong an immune system, especially if there are chronic health issues. Food poisoning may not be too severe for younger adults, but it can be dangerous for your parents.
Cold foods like deli meats and potato salad must be kept refrigerated. For an outdoor gathering, a cooler filled with ice is essential. Once people have gotten their food, the items go back onto the ice.
Grilled meats need to be kept hot. Once cooked, they shouldn’t be left out for long. The FDA recommends getting all warm or cold foods put away within two hours of cooking or serving the items. If the temperature in the sun is higher than 90 F, put everything away within one hour.
Use removable covers or foil to ensure items are protected from flying insects. You don’t want to eat foods that flies have crawled over.
Make sure everyone wears sunscreen. Even if you’re in the shade, some UV rays reach you. Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher every couple of hours. If your gathering is near a pool or body of water, people need to reapply sunscreen when they get out of the water.
Keep Plenty of Water Available
If it’s hot, you want to make sure your parents stay hydrated. Ideally, they should drink a small glass of water each hour. If they’re active or sweating more than usual, they need to increase their water intake.
You don’t want the fun afternoon to end abruptly with your mom or dad becoming dehydrated. Make sure someone is watching their water intake throughout the day.
Can Elder Care Help Your Parents Age Safely?
What do you do when everyone goes home after the family Labor Day gathering? Your parents have all the companionship they crave that day. As kids get back into a full school schedule and you get back to work, you know your parents are alone all day.
Your parents want to remain independent, but you also saw many signs that they’re having a harder time. During your family gathering, you noticed your mom had difficulty walking up and down her deck stairs. Your dad’s taking more medications than before. It’s time to address their need for help.
With elder care services that meet their needs, your parents don’t have to be alone. They have the help they need with daily tasks and medication management. You have peace of mind that they have a trained professional making sure they’re okay each day. Learn more about the cost of elder care in your parent’s town.