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How to protect your loved ones this Winter

MCFE > How to protect your loved ones this Winter

    As we age, our ability to acclimatise to cold weather may change.  Once upon a time we may not have felt the cold, but as we get older we may feel more sensitive to cold weather. Homestyle Aged Care have shared their tips for keeping our loved ones warm this winter.

    Becoming more sensitive to the chilly weather can occur for a number of reasons:

    A decrease in the metabolic rate. Ageing bodies are not capable of generating enough heat to maintain the normal body temperature of 36-37c

    Thinning of the fat layer beneath the skin

    Low blood pressure

    Older people are often less physically active

    Side effects from certain medications

    Medical conditions such as thyroid disease or high cholesterol

    Poor blood circulation

    Signs of cold sensitivity are more than just feeling cold or shivering!  They can also include:

    Skin turning pale

    A slower rate of breathing

    Drowsiness

    Confusion

    Undue fatigue

    Loss of co-ordination

    Memory loss

    There are a number of things we can do to assist the elderly to stay warm. These include:

    Raising the ambient temperature

    Ensuring their home is well insulated to retain the heat and draft proofing doors and windows

    Providing warm beverages such as tea/coffee or a cup of Milo

    Warming the bed with an electric blanket, or by layering blankets rather than using just one heavy blanket or doona

    Dressing in layers rather than heavy clothing, and starting with basic thermals such as a vest

    Trying to get your loved one to move around, rather than sitting all the time

    Supplying a wheat pack, or back/hand warmer which can heated quickly in the microwave

    Eating well, for eg. hearty soups which contain nutrients required to maintain a healthy immune system

    Ensuring your loved one has their flu vaccination just before winter, as flu can progress to pneumonia

    Assisting the elderly to best cope with winter just takes a little preparation and care.

     

    source: www.homestyleagedcare.com.au