With Halloween now behind us and November in full swing, Torontonians are well aware that the frigid temperatures of winter are right around the corner. For senior citizens, the winter can be particularly tough. Naturally, they are more susceptible to extreme weather conditions than their younger counterparts. With decreased metabolisms, older adults have slower responses to cold. In addition, it’s harder for their bodies to retain heat when blood circulation slows down.
Let’s take a look at some effective ways to keep seniors warm throughout the winter.
Stay abreast of extreme weather conditions.
The elements can certainly make a trek outdoors very dangerous. Be mindful of weather conditions by keeping an eye on the Public Weather Alerts for Canada. If your area is expecting either snowfall or icy conditions, it’s best to keep your elderly loved one indoors. As All Seniors Care reminds us, ice and snow can pose a serious threat to seniors.
“Research suggests that cold weather can make it more likely for seniors to experience falls,” informs their website, “Help your loved one keep their pathways clear. Give elderly persons a supportive hand when they go out to avoid a slip and fall accident on an unexpected patch of ice.”
Winterize the home.
Naturally, you’ll want to increase the temperature inside your home this winter. But with rising heating bills looming, it’s wise to find other methods of keeping the cold outside. Inspect the foundation of your home for cracks. These unwanted openings can release heat from your home forcing your thermostat to slide down a few notches. It’s also a good idea to block drafts as best as possible.
“Even a well-heated home can feel cold with a chilly draft creeping in,” points out California’s 1Heart Caregiver Services, “Block drafts from coming into the house by looking for potential heat leaks and blocking them. For instance, gaps under doors, cracks around windows, or mail slots. Use rolled-up towels, caulking, or draft blocks to help the home conserve heat and prevent a chill from seeping in.”
This belongs-on-every-list health tip reminds us to drink water regularly. There are numerous health benefits of drinking enough water every day. They include boosting energy and brain function, preventing headaches, relieving constipation, treating kidney stones, preventing hangovers and aiding weight loss. As All Seniors Care tells us, staying hydrated is also an important step in getting through the winter.
“Make sure to drink enough water in winter (8-10 glasses a day), even when not feeling thirsty!” advises their website, “It may sound counterintuitive, but the risk of dehydration is higher in the winter than summer – people just aren’t as thirsty. Opt for water rather than alcohol, soda, or caffeine-laden beverages.”
Enjoy greater independence.
The LifeCare Mobility Solutions team would like to do its part in keeping your elderly loved ones warm and comfortable this winter. Our mobility solutions make it so that they can stay within their homes and access each room safely and independently. To learn more, please don’t hesitate to call us at 416-267-9800 or email us at [email protected]. You may also contact us by filling out the form on our Contact page!