It’s vitally important to make plans for the cold weather spells and our providers of Adult Care, Home Instead, and our friends at Independent Age have shared some great tips on keeping healthy and warm this winter.
Preparing your home
Prior planning and preparation can often prevent winter emergencies and unplanned challenges, and there are many ways to make sure your home is ready for winter. We’ve included some helpful ideas below – from making sure your home is energy efficient to stocking up on essential items.
- Service your heating system regularly and make sure you have your emergency heating number in a safe place.
- Try to get any essential repairs or odd jobs done before the dark evenings draw in, such as checking light bulbs are working correctly.
- Stock up on cupboard essentials, just in case the weather takes a turn for the worse. Tinned foods including baked beans, soup and vegetables are all ideal, as well as bottles, jars, life-long milk, dried goods - such as cereals, pasta and rice, and also freezer food including meat, fish and bread.
Keeping your home warm
Although it may be tempting to save money on heating bills, it is vitally important to stay warm too!
- Try to maintain a stable, comfortable temperature in your home - your living room should be heated to 21°C (70ºF) and the other rooms in your home should be 18°C (64ºF). If you can’t heat all the rooms you use, heat the living room in the day and your bedroom just before you go to bed.
- Keep the warm air in and the cold air out using draught excluders around doors and heavy or thermal curtains to stop heat escaping.
As the weather gets colder, many of us find ourselves at home more often. Winter can sometimes become a lonely time so make sure you have the number of friends and family close by, especially if you feel worried or isolated. Talk to your friends, family and neighbours and ask if they’re able to visit or call more frequently.
Looking after yourself
There are many things you can do before and during the winter period to make sure you stay well.
- Hot water bottles and electric blankets are perfect to warm up your bed at night.
- Drinking hot drinks and eating hot meals helps to maintain your body temperature.
- Moving about, exercising (even chair-based exercise), or spreading your chores out throughout the day can make you feel warmer.
- Flu vaccinations.
- Keeping a supply of over-the-counter medicines at home for common ailments, such as colds, coughs and sore throats, will reduce the need to venture out, especially if the weather takes a turn for the worse.
- If you go decide to venture out in the cold, make sure your essentials include a good coat, hat, gloves, scarf and shoes with good grip, as well as your money and keys.
Layering thin clothes keeps you much warmer than wearing a thick woolly jumper as it stops warm air escaping from your body!