Older adults have a thinner layer of fat under the skin, making them more susceptible to cold. Conditions like diabetes, peripheral artery disease and kidney disease can restrict blood flow and lower body temperature.
How to Keep Seniors Warm
Normal body temperature does not change much with aging. But as you get older, it becomes harder for your body to control its temperature. A decrease in the amount of fat below the skin makes it harder to stay warm. Aging decreases your ability to sweat.
The average—and safe—room temperature for an elderly person is around 78 degrees, according to research published in Age and Aging. To prevent an elderly person from becoming too cold, it’s recommended the room temperature never drops below 65 degrees.
Because lower temperatures and winds can reduce body heat, blood vessels tend to constrict, making it more difficult for oxygen to reach the entire body. Seniors who are thin are especially at risk of cold-related cardiovascular issues because they do not have as much fat to provide warmth and keep blood flowing.
Cold intolerance is a well known symptom of hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormones. These hormones help regulate metabolism and temperature. When the thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormones, the body’s processes tend to slow down.
What Causes Excessive Sleep in the Elderly? Sleep deprivation is the most common cause of daytime sleepiness. This can be caused by something as simple as a too-warm room, too much coffee during the day or achy joints at night. Sometimes daytime fatigue stems from boredom.
What Are Normal Vital Signs?
The normal resting heart rate for adults over the age of 10 years, including older adults, is between 60 and 100 beats per minute (bpm). Highly trained athletes may have a resting heart rate below 60 bpm, sometimes reaching 40 bpm.
The hypothalamus helps keep the body’s internal functions in balance. It helps regulate: Appetite and weight. Body temperature.
Aging causes a natural decrease in metabolic rate, which means seniors’ bodies might be unable to generate enough heat to maintain a “normal” temperature of 98.6 degrees. Slower circulation can make it difficult to retain heat throughout the body. This could be due to aging or medication side effects.
For an older person, a body temperature of 95°F or lower can cause many health problems, such as a heart attack, kidney problems, liver damage, or worse. Being outside in the cold, or even being in a very cold house, can lead to hypothermia. 4
Adults. Among adults, the average body temperature ranges from 97°F (36.1°C) to 99°F (37.2°C). Adults over age 65. In older adults, the average body temperature is lower than 98.6°F (37°C).
Lack of vitamin B12 and iron deficiency can cause anemia and lead you to feel cold. Good sources of B12 are chicken, eggs and fish, and people with iron deficiency may want to seek out poultry, pork, fish, peas, soybeans, chickpeas and dark green leafy vegetables.
When an elderly adult’s blood is not properly circulating, the temperature of their extremities tends to fluctuate. The blood vessels in those areas constrict in efforts to retain body heat, which results in cold hands and feet.
“Older adults can get shorter because the cartilage between their joints gets worn out and osteoporosis causes the spinal column to become shorter,” he says. “Adults can also lose lean muscle mass but gain fat. Osteoporosis causes bones to become weak and fracture, which can also cause a person to become shorter.