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Winter Safety Tips for Seniors: Navigating Cold Weather with Ease

DeDeSleigh Bells ring, snow is glistening. But walking in a winter wonderland can be dangerous. Are you listening?

That may not be exactly how the song goes, but you get the drift – the snow drift that is. Plummeting temperatures and hazardous weather conditions can be particularly challenging as we age. Prolonged exposure to extreme cold or one misstep on an icy sidewalk might mean a day in the ER – or worse.

Check out these cold weather safety tips for older adults and make sure the only canes in your house this season are of the candy variety.  

Dress Appropriately

We tend to lose body heat faster as we age. A big chill can turn into hypothermia before we even realize there is a problem. If you must go out into the cold:

  • Dress in layers. Multiple layers can insulate you better than one thick layer. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) suggests an inner layer of wool, silk, or polypropylene which will hold more body heat than cotton.
  • Wear a hat and scarf. We lose body heat quickly when the head and neck are bare.
  • If it’s snowy or sleeting, wear a waterproof coat or jacket. If your clothes get wet, or even damp, change them right away.
  • Pay attention to your body. If you are feeling cold, head indoors to warm up.

Non-Skid Shoes

The first rule of winter safety: Those 4-inch stiletto heels – or whatever passes for heels these days – are off limits. If you are stepping out into nasty weather, only shoes with non-skid soles will do. Even with the proper foot attire, it’s still best to wait until walkways are cleared. A slip and fall can happen in an instant and lead to a host of dangerous injuries with possible life-altering complications.

Keep the Inside Cozy

  • Keep your heat to at least 68-70 degrees F. To save on heating costs, close the vents and the doors to rooms you are not using.
  • Keep the blinds and curtains closed to help insulate windows and keep heat from escaping.
  • If the heat is set at 70 degrees, you may want to throw on some winter socks and wrap them up in a blanket for extra warmth.
  • Sleep with long underwear under your PJs and add a blanket to your covers.

Space Heaters: Yes or No?

Some space heaters can be a fire hazard.  Others have been known to result in carbon monoxide poisoning.  Before opting for a space heater, check out these directives from the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Two of their main instructions: Keep any space heater at least 3 feet from curtains and bedding and never leave the device unattended.

Avoid the Winter Blues in an Overture Active Adult Community

There are plenty of winter safety tips to protect your physical health. But what about your mental health during the long winter months? Studies show isolation exacerbated by inclement weather can leave seniors lonely and depressed. Overture senior apartment living is the antidote to loneliness, exactly what the doctor ordered to cure the winter blues and blahs. 

Book a tour at the Overture senior apartment complex of your choice today. You’ll breeze through the winter enjoying a schedule packed with a multitude of indoor activities, classes, and unlimited opportunities to mix and mingle with new friends.

It may be cold outside, but rest assured, once you decide to rightsize into an Overture community, the welcome is guaranteed to be enthusiastic - and warm