With temperatures dropping, a number of precautions must be taken to keep up with health. For seniors, this is even more important. At this age, the body is naturally more fragile, so problems such as infections, respiratory disease, and even dehydration become even more severe in the cold.
Some families in winter even call home health care near me for proper elderly care in winter.
Seniors in winter
With advanced age, the immune system is losing some of its strength, which makes it easier for diseases and other conditions to proliferate. This coupled with the fact that in the cold germs, viruses and bacteria are more present makes the care of the elderly need to be reinforced. The simple flu, for example, can easily become pneumonia under these conditions, as the lungs of the older person do not have as much expansiveness.
The greatest threats to the elderly in winter are hypothermia (sudden drop in body temperature), the infections and the increase in chronic pain. Hypothermia occurs when the body temperature is below 36.8 degrees, and this causes several problems for the elderly: weakness, fatigue, immobility and, in extreme cases, even loss of consciousness and shock.
Since the infections can be diverse, from a simple flu virus to severe respiratory disease. It is important to beware of these threats because, as you have seen, the immune system of the elderly becomes even more fragile in the cold, and this facilitates simple conditions to evolve into severe conditions.
In the cold also increases chronic pain – the famous discomfort in the joints that often arise in winter for many elderly, for example. Besides the pain itself, another danger in these cases is the fact that such pains induce the elderly to move less, which in turn reduces the body’s ability to maintain its temperature. The more exercise and activity the body performs, the better the blood flows and, as a result, body temperature stabilizes.
Care of the elderly in the cold
The main care with elderly people in the cold is to keep the body temperature stable and avoid contact with infectious agents. Using warm clothing and accessories (coats, scarves, gloves, hats etc.) is a simple but very efficient way to prevent the body temperature of the elderly from falling. Drinking hot drinks such as tea and plenty of water, opting for warm blankets, and taking quick showers at mild temperatures are other cold-weather care tips.