As winter fast approaches, it’s important to take some time and get your senior truly ready for the cold weather.
For seniors, cold temperatures actually pose quite a bit of a danger. Seniors tend to lose body heat much faster than younger adults. And, unfortunately, this can result in increased medical risks.
Seniors are not always aware of when their body temperatures are dropping, so it’s crucial as caregivers to be ever vigilant. To help you better prepare, we’ve put together a winter checklist! For your convenience, our checklist is divided into 3 categories: personal care, home prep, and medical care.
There’s so much to do before the busy winter season, don’t let the time slip by!
I. Personal Care
The key to dressing warm for winter is layering. To layer properly, your seniors need to have a wide variety of articles of clothing. Check your senior’s closet for light sweaters, warm sweaters, long sleeve t-shirts, comfortable undershirts, leggings, leg warmers, long underwear, and fleece pants.
Hats, gloves, boots, a sturdy coat- these are all items you’ll want to be sure your senior has before the harsh weather hits. Depending on how often your senior goes out, also consider waterproof boots, raincoat, rain pants, snow boots, and snow pants. You can also stock up on disposable hand warmers (or buy a reusable one) for those extra chilly days outside.
II. Home Prep
Heating technicians can be extremely hard to get a hold of during the busy months of winter, and the last thing you want is for your senior to get stuck sitting in the freezing cold for weeks. Avoid the rush, and get your senior’s heating systems checked now, while the lines are short.
One of the biggest causes of a chilly home is cold air leaked from windows. If you’re struggling to figure out why your senior’s home is so cold, give the windows a good look over. Check for any loose window panes and misaligned frames, and check if any windows need insulating.
Throw Blankets and Rugs
Stash throw blankets in every room and consider laying down carpets and rugs. This is an easy cold-weather fix that will keep your senior’s feet and body warm on a dime.
III. Medical Care
A big worry throughout the rough winter months is medication shortages during blackouts, snow-ins, and the like. While the weather is still mild, take the time now to check your senior’s medication supplies. Fill up on anything that seems like it’s getting low, and talk with your senior’s doctor about other winter precautions.
Part of keeping your senior safe and healthy from the cold winter weather is paying attention to preventative care. One of the easiest ways to engage in preventative care is to make sure your senior is up-to-date on all his or her doctors’ visits. If you haven’t already done so for the season, take your senior for a quick and simple wellness check.
Home Care Aide
If you’re worried about properly attending to your senior’s needs during the harsh winter months, consider hiring a home care professional. At Aurora HomeCare & Hospice we can help you with a variety of tasks, including watching over the general well-being of your senior. A home care aide will keep a close eye on how your senior is faring through the cold weather, and offer tips and suggestions for your senior’s emotional and physical health.