Winter can be hard for everyone. If you experience winter weather, don’t forget to check on your neighbors who are elderly or may need assistance.
Here is some helpful advice for preventing common winter dangers that the elderly population faces.
- Avoid Slipping on Ice
Icy, snowy roads and sidewalks make it easy to slip and fall. “Unfortunately, falls are a common occurrence for senior citizens, especially during the winter months,” says Dr. Stanley Wang, a physician at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto, Calif. Often these falls cause major injuries such as hip and wrist fractures, head trauma and major lacerations.
While younger people often recover relatively quickly from such injuries, older adults face complications, which Dr. Wang says are a leading cause of death from injury in men and women over the age of 65.
- Dress for Warmth. Cold temperatures can lead to frostbite and hypothermia — a condition where the body temperature dips too low. According to the CDC, more than half of hypothermia-related deaths were of people over the age of 65.
Your body temperature should never dip below 95 degrees — if it does get medical assistance immediately.
- Fight Wintertime Depression
Because it can be difficult and dangerous to get around, many seniors have less contact with others during cold months. This can breed feelings of loneliness and isolation.
To help avoid these issues, family members can check in on seniors as often as possible; even a short, daily phone call can make a big difference. Seniors can also arrange a check-in system with neighbors and friends, where each person looks in on one or two others daily.
January 28, 2015 Posted by National CPR Corp | General Health Advice, winter | elderly, winter