Prep Now for Chilly Weather
While Louisiana isn’t known for the blistery climates up north, it certainly gets cold enough that poor preparation can result in a lot of discomfort... and definitely can be dangerous to those vulnerable to illness and injury. The elder population is especially at risk, but there are plenty of options to keep everyone safe.
Obviously, the first consideration is remaining warm. When temperatures drop, they can irritate illnesses. And if body temperature drops below 95 degrees, there is an added risk of heart attack, kidney problems or liver damage. Even a very cold house can lead to hypothermia.
The National Institute on Aging recommends setting the heat to at least 68-70 degrees fahrenheit and ensuring that the house isn’t losing heat through windows or doors. Additionally, take the following steps for a safer cold weather season:
- Wear proper clothing. If needed, add layers.
- Take medications as prescribed. Ask your physician if medications may affect body temperature. And get tips to make sure you’re never too cold ... or too hot.
- Eat well and maintain a healthy body weight. Body fat can keep you warmer.
- Keep extra blankets within reach. Throw one over the back of the sofa and at the foot of the bed.
- Put extra layers in the car.
Remaining injury free is just as important as protecting against illness and irritating health conditions. Cold temperatures can freeze walkways, causing slips or falls. Additionally, the need for heaters bring trip hazards and fire safety concerns. Wear proper footwear and make sure heaters are placed in safe areas and used properly.
Family members, check on your loved ones. They may not want to “bother” you, but it could mean saving their lives. Preparing for colder temperatures and windy days can mean a lot more than just bundling up. Ask plenty of questions to make sure your loved ones weather the cold temperatures.
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