Now that winter is here, it’s important to get ready for the cold weather if you care for an elderly loved one. The cold can be especially dangerous for older people, so it’s important to ensure the right plans are made.
As the weather gets colder, many new risks to the health and safety of seniors appear. To make sure seniors are safe this winter, it’s important to think about possible dangers inside and outside the long-term care homes Barrie and get ready for them.
Everyone has a hard time with ice, snow, and other winter weather, but being a caregiver can make things even worse. Appointments with the doctor, social events, church, and trips to the grocery store can all be much harder to get to in the winter.
Older people lose body heat more quickly, making them more likely to get sick or hurt in the winter. Here are a few things you can do to help your older loved ones stay healthy and safe when it’s cold outside.
Bundle Up In Long-Term Care Homes Barrie
Older adults are more likely to get hypothermia, so they should always wear warm layers, thick socks, a heavy coat, mittens, a hat, and a scarf when they go outside. Making sure you wear warm clothes that cover your whole body will help keep your body temperature from dropping when you go outside.
When it’s really cold, cover your mouth and nose with a scarf to protect your lungs, and wear shoes that won’t slip, so you don’t fall.
Keep Them Safe From Falling.
Falls are one of the biggest health risks for seniors all year, and the colder months bring new risks for falling inside and outside the home. There is also always a risk of falling at home since colder temperatures can make joints and limbs stiffer and harder to move around. Younger people can heal faster from injuries they get from falling, but older people have more problems.
To keep from falling, older people should wear shoes with good traction. Seniors should also stay inside until the roads and sidewalks are safe to walk on. Please make sure there are nonslip mats inside doors to keep people from falling because their shoes are wet or covered in snow. As soon as you enter, remove any shoes covered in ice or snow so you don’t fall. Seniors can easily avoid these kinds of accidents by being given slippers with good traction.
Seniors who need home care assistance in Barrie often don’t have family close enough to help them prepare for winter and do the preventative tasks they need to do throughout the season. This means that professional caregivers will do a lot of this work. Caregivers can plan for a few common dangers ahead of time to make sure long-term care homes in Barrie are ready for the winter.
Eat Healthy Meals
Even in the winter, eating a healthy, well-balanced meal is important. You are more likely to have a vitamin D deficiency if you don’t get enough sun and don’t spend much time outside. Vitamin D is important for strong and healthy bones, teeth, and muscles. You can take vitamin D eat foods high in vitamin D, like oily fish, milk, egg yolks, and red meat.
Keep In Touch
Seniors can get depressed during the long winter months if they feel alone. It’s important to check on your elderly loved ones often, preferably in person but also by phone if you live far away. It’s also a good idea to ask neighbors to check on the older loved ones from time to time or hire a professional home care assistance in Barrie.
Take Care To Avoid Fire.
If you use a fireplace or gas heater, make sure they are cleaned and vented properly. If they aren’t, they can give off too much carbon monoxide, which is dangerous. Putting in a carbon monoxide detector will give you peace of mind that the air you’re breathing is safe.
Before using your fireplace, make an appointment for an inspection to ensure it won’t start a fire or give off dangerous fumes.
Winter is time for the holidays, which means Christmas trees, candles, and other lights that could start a fire. Install and test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are working. If you’re having trouble, don’t hesitate to ask for help.
Stay Warm Inside
We usually think of the inside of a home as a safe and comfortable place to be. But hypothermia can happen if you live in a house, apartment, or building that doesn’t heat or insulate well. Even if the temperature inside is between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit, it might not be enough to keep people safe.
Try These Things To Keep Warm Inside:
- Make sure the house is well insulated and doesn’t lose heat through the doors or windows. You can block draughts with towels if there are spaces under your doors. If you want to keep the cold out, try caulking or weather stripping on your windows.
- If you aren’t using a room or space, close the doors and block the vents.
- Ensure the heat is set to at least 68–70°F to keep rooms warm.
Get Ready For Storms And Power Outages.
It’s always important to have enough of the things you need. It’s a good idea to keep extra water, food, flashlights, and batteries on hand in case bad weather makes it unsafe to leave the house. Check that your loved one’s prescriptions are up-to-date and have enough medicine for at least a week. This will help make sure they stay healthy.
Make A Plan For Emergencies.
So that natural disasters don’t catch us off guard, some protocols and frameworks tell us what steps to take first to limit the damage.
Home care for seniors could be based on the same idea.
Here’s what you can do to be ready for a power outage or something else unexpected:
- Prepare a bag with basic medicines and an extra set of clothes.
- Find a reliable person who could temporarily take care of the seniors, tell them about the plan, and post it where everyone can see it.
- Encourage and help the seniors by suggesting smartphone apps that could be useful in an emergency.
Even though it’s important for everyone to be prepared for dangerous winter weather, seniors are especially at risk when it’s cold and icy outside. Winter can still be a happy time for older people if they plan ahead. Take the time to plan ahead and ensure seniors have what they need to stay happy and healthy until spring at long-term care homes in Barrie. Taking the right precautions and letting neighbors, friends, and family help you will keep you safe and happy all winter.