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Winter Storm Brings Potential Dangers to Area Seniors

Three Steps for Seniors to Stay Safe

February 3, 2015
The Luminary

With dangerous winter weather in the forecast, Home Instead Senior Care urges seniors and their families to take several important steps to ensure their safety.

Those over the age of 65 account for nearly half of all hypothermia deaths. As the body ages, the ability to maintain a normal internal body temperature decreases, creating an insensitivity to moderately cold temperatures. Seniors may not realize they are putting themselves at risk until symptoms appear. Symptoms of hypothermia include: shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech and drowsiness. If symptoms are present, immediate medical attention is necessary.

The leading reason for hypothermia in the elderly is due to poorly heated homes, which is entirely preventable. Follow these simple tips to ensure a warm household.

Stay Warm

Every year, more than 1.6 million seniors end up in the emergency room because of a fall. With icy conditions, the chances of falling are even greater.

Preventing Falls

Winter weather can take a toll on everyone, especially seniors. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) can occur in seniors and impact their emotional health. Some signs to watch for with SAD include: a loss of energy, an increased appetite and an enhanced feeling of lethargy and tiredness. If symptoms are present, talk to your medical provider about treatment options.

Additionally, winter storms can be unpredictable. It is important to be prepared in case of an emergency.

Build a network

To learn how Home Instead Senior Care can assist in the cold weather, visit www.homeinstead.com.

 
 

 

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