By Kim Glovas

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Extreme heat and humidity is making today a quite a bit steamy and uncomfortable for many of us.

And, officials warn, the elderly are especially prone to heat-related problems.

The Philadelphia Corporation for Aging is urging everyone to check in on older neighbors, friends, and family members.

“As you get older, even in your 60s, your inner thermostat starts to be less effective,” notes PCA communications director Linda Riley.  “Your body may be hotter than you realize.  So you really need to be very careful and do the right things to keep yourself safe.”

She says that means staying hydrated by drinking lots of water and avoiding caffeine and alcohol.

Riley also urges everyone to use the air conditioning on hot days.  If you have room fans, she says, use them — but make sure your windows are open, or you will be creating a giant convection oven in your home.

As an alternative, go to a cool place such as a movie theatre, the library, the mall, or the home of a friend who has AC.

Riley also says 23 senior centers throughout the city are air-conditioned.

PCA also has a free brochure available containing tips for dealing with hot weather, available on their web site, pcacares.org.

DOWNLOAD FREE BROCHURE (.pdf format)