Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cold Weather Tips For Seniors

Everyone is sensitive to extremes in weather.With age, the body may become less able to respond to long exposure to very hot or very cold temperatures.
In cold weather, some citizens may develop hypothermia, which can be fatal if not detected and treated. This occurs when exposure to cold causes a person's body to lose heat faster than it can be replaced.
Hypothermia can be problem for our seniors, who often have other illnesses, or take medications that can interfere with the body's ability to regulate temperature.

Signs Of Hypothermia In Senior Citizens:
Seniors are especially vulnerable to hypothermia.Be alert to this risk if you or someone you know:
Has insufficient heat at home due to substandard housing conditions, poor insulation, lack of money to pay for fuel, etc.
• Lives alone and may be exposed to cold without others noticing.
• Is physically inactive due to illness or disability.
• Eats poorly-no hot, balanced meals for good nutrition.
• Takes medications that reduce the body's ability to protect itself against cold.
• Reacts abnormally to cold - for example, does not shiver when cold. Shivering is the body's way of trying to stay warm.

Cold Weather Raises Blood Pressure:
The Florida freeze poses a major threat for the state's elderly population.
According to the Archives of Internal Medicine, the blood pressure of people 65 and older rises during colder temperatures.
Doctors said because the risk of stroke and aneurysms also goes up when blood pressure is higher, senior citizens should take extra care to stay warm, monitor their blood pressure and seek help if need be.

Caring For Others In The Cold:
Here are some questions to ask a person who may be sensitive to temperature changes:
• How are you keeping warm?
• Are you wearing layers of clothing?
• Do you have enough blankets?
• Have you been shivering?
• Have you eaten?


1 comment:

Kate 1000 said...

Thanks for writing this.It's very useful