Staying Safe this Winter
As we enter the heart of winter, and the days turn colder and darker, our senior population face many challenges. We wanted to share some tips for you and your loved one to help them stay safe this winter season.
1.Layer up! The freezing temperatures can lead to frostbite and hypothermia. According to the CDC, more than half of hypothermia-related deaths were of people over the age of 65. Make sure your loved one has access to warm socks, sweaters, gloves, hats, and coats. Also, make sure the heat in your loved one’s home is put at an appropriate temperature where they are comfortable.
2.Get the flu vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that adults aged 65 and older get a flu vaccine each year. At least 71 percent of all annual flu deaths in the U.S. happen to individuals who are 65 or older. Many of our CareOne communities offer flu clinics throughout the winter. Seniors are especially at risk for complications from the flu, such as pneumonia, bronchitis and ear infections. The flu can also make any chronic health problems worse.
3.Be aware of slipping hazards. People generally experience stiffer joints in colder weather, couple this longer nights and black ice, and you have a dangerous situation for seniors. Make sure your loved one’s sidewalks and driveway are clear of ice and snow by using melting ice and sand for grip.
4.Be aware of Seasonal Affective disorder (SAD). SAD can occur in seniors and impact their emotional health. Some signs to watch for include: lack of energy, an increased feeling of lethargy, lack of interest in familiar activities, and depression. If you notice symptoms, talk to your loved one’s medical provider.
Winter can be a dangerous time for the elderly, but we will be there for any questions/concerns you may have.