Try to stay away from cold places. Changes in the body that come with aging can make it harder for older adults to be aware of getting cold.
Check the weather forecasts for windy and cold weather. Try to stay inside or in a warm place on cold and windy days. If you have to go out, wear warm clothes including a hat and gloves. A waterproof coat can help you stay warm if it's cold and snowy.
Wear several layers of loose clothing when it's cold. The layers will trap warm air between them. Don't wear tight clothing because it can keep your blood from flowing freely. This can lead to loss of body heat.
Ask your doctor how the medicines you are taking affect body heat. Some medicines used by older people can increase the risk of accidental hypothermia. These include drugs used to treat anxiety, depression, or nausea. Some over-the-counter cold remedies can also cause problems.
Make sure you eat enough food to keep up your weight. If you don't eat well, you might have less fat under your skin. Body fat helps you to stay warm.
This time of year is a special time for all. With the anticipation of more snow days and the excitement surrounding the holidays, your mind can be consumed. The last thing on your mind is the people in your life who might not have anyone to share this special time of year with anyone. Sometimes the greatest gift that you can give someone is your time. We normally talk about physical proactive steps that you can take to protect the elderly in your life, such as climate control and activity planning, but this month we want to focus on a more emotional approach.
By Linda Lauzon
Handwashing is like a "do-it-yourself" vaccine—it involves five simple and effective steps you can take to reduce the spread of diarrheal and respiratory illnesses so you can stay healthy. Regular handwashing, particularly before and after certain activities, is one of the best ways to remove germs, avoid getting sick, and prevent the spread of germs to others. It's quick, it's simple, and it can keep us all from getting sick. Handwashing is a win for everyone, except the germs.
By Linda Lauzon, Park Ridge Health Home Health
Care and Hospice agencies are made up of millions of devoted nurses, home care aides, therapists, social workers and other professionals who are committed to making a difference in the lives of patients and families who choose to receive care at home and in facilities. The care is often provided following hospitalizations, surgeries, a new chronic care diagnosis or during a period of illness.
We will touch more on the importance of preplanning in cases of bad weather for loved ones who might still be living on their own in future posts, but for now we have a single tip. If your loved one is physically or cognitively impaired, make a plan of people who can stay with him or her during times of bad weather.