5 tips to help seniors have a nice winter
If the summer season is feared by seniors because of the risk of heat wave, winter is not without dangers. When the temperature drops significantly, we must be vigilant and control the daily life of the elderly as a result. With appropriate attention and support, you can help seniors to spend a safe and enjoyable winter.
These tips are generic and use common sense. They do not constitute in any case a medical opinion. If in doubt, do consult your doctor.
Older people should avoid going out in the extreme cold
The waves of extreme cold are, just like heat waves, the enemies of the elderly. As a precaution, the elderly should as far as possible refrain from going out in extreme cold weather in winter, especially to avoid the risk of falling on snowing and icing days, and be safe.
This advice is particularly valuable for elderly people with heart or respiratory diseases such as asthmatics and people with angina pectoris. Indeed, cold can very quickly aggravate these pathologies.
When an older person has to go out in the winter, it is advised that she be accompanied. In addition, in anticipation of a cold snap, it is better to shop in advance for a longer period.
Seniors must wear appropriate clothing to protect themselves in the winter
If an older person is going out in the winter, she has to follow several dress codes:
- wear a hat or toque, gloves or mittens and a scarf
- wear several layers of clothing or otherwise polar wool underneath
- put on good winter shoes to limit the risk of falls outside
Ideally, seniors will wear winter boots. However, they should be well insulated and waterproof, with thick and slip resistant soles.
Monitor carefully the diet of seniors in winter
It is necessary to feed enough to allow the body to fight against the loss of calories due to cold. In winter, the elderly should not hesitate to drink hot drinks preferably and in sufficient quantity. Vegetable soups, easily digestible and healthy, are also a good source of vitamins and they warm up the body very well.
Be prepared to react promptly and adequately in case of injury
Older people are more vulnerable to low winter temperatures, especially in extreme cold weather. There are three types of injuries that you need to pay special attention to:
● frozen fingers: they become swollen and red spots may appear. To help an elderly person with frozen fingers, dip their fingers in lukewarm water, and especially not rubbing and avoid any source of heat.
● frostbites: they are due to tissue freezing. They are recognized by the blackish-blue color of the skin, which has become insensitive and blistered. This is an emergency and you should call 911 quickly.
● hypothermia: its main symptoms are chills, shivering, confusion, clumsiness and sudden fatigue. If the elderly person suffers from hypothermia in winter, help should be called. He/She should be sheltered from the cold, covered and made to drink, while waiting for help.
Consider hiring a senior home care professional
Extreme temperatures, both hot and cold, with all the health risks for seniors, highlight the usefulness and even the need for help and home care services.
Whether you are calling upon a family caregiver or a professional caregiver, make sure that a qualified person is present especially during these difficult times.
Older people require more attention and care over time, and even more so during extreme hot weather and cold weather. It is important to take adequate and necessary measures to protect your loved ones.
For a free consultation in the comfort of your home.