Winter is a beautiful season but can be a tough time for older people. Whilst the colder temperatures and shorter days can be difficult, there are ways that you can prepare yourself to stay healthy during these cold, wet months. We have put together some simple tips on how you can stay well and active during the winter months:
Stay warm: Try to keep your home as warm as possible and wear warm clothing, including a hat and gloves, when you go outside. If you’re indoors, make sure you have a blanket to hand, block any drafts with draft excluders and wear thick socks. Having warm feet and a warm head will help retain heat in your body.
Stay active: Stay active by going for a walk or doing some light exercises. This can help improve circulation and boost your mood. If walking is difficult then seated or standing chair exercises can be a great way to keep you moving and can easily be worked into your morning routine. Why not try marching on the spot for 30 seconds or sitting in a chair with a pillow between your knees then squeezing the pillow for 3 seconds before releasing and repeating.
Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of fluids, such as water and herbal teas, to help prevent dehydration. We all enjoy a morning cup of tea but try to limit your caffeine intake where possible. If drinking water is difficult, try adding some cordial or squash to make it a little more interesting.
Stay connected: Stay connected with friends and family through phone calls, video chats, or even social media. It’s a great way to talk with people you trust and share how you’re feeling. If you’re not tech savvy then ask someone to help you get set up. There are charities that offer friendly, regular chats. For example Age UK offers in-person and telephone befriending schemes.
Nourish your body: It sounds obvious but eating a balanced diet, including plenty of fruits and vegetables will help to boost your immune system. It can even support and improve minor ailments.
Stay informed: Keep an eye on the news about the weather and any potential hazards, such as slippery pavements or icy roads. By being aware of these things you can take the appropriate precautions to minimise your chance of getting hurt or injured. If you need to go outside, make sure to wear appropriate footwear and take extra care when walking on slippery surfaces.
Know what you’re entitled to: If you were born before 25 September 1957 you could get between £250 and £600 to help you pay your heating bills. This is known as a ‘Winter Fuel Payment’. Visit the GOV.UK website for more information.
We hope these suggestions will help you stay active and well during the winter months and enjoy the season to the fullest. If you have any concerns about yourself or a family member then please get in touch with our team.