Temperature regulation and technology
journal contributionposted on 13.06.2013, 11:03 by George Havenith
The ability to thermoregulate typically decreases with age. This is strongly related to decreases in physical fitness and increases in the incidence of disabilities with ageing. The reduced thermoregulatory capacity leads to increased mortality and morbidity. Heat stroke, hypothermia, increased number of falls, and in home drowning are some of the problems that are identified to be associated with this reduced thermoregulatory capacity. As solution, using advanced technology in terms of full climate control is suggested as a short-term solution for the ill or infirm only. For longer-term solutions, limited climate control (taking away peak loads), improved housing design and proper use of modern clothing are proposed to alleviate the problems. For the clothing, better education of the elderly in the possible advantages of high tech clothing materials is proposed, as well as education to their proper way of use. Manufacturers should consider adjusting their marketing policies to include the elderly in their targeted groups.