How older people can avoid health risks in winter

How older people can avoid health risks in winter

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Every year, many older people die during the winter
Every year in the winter season there are increasing health problems for older people. Doctors have now launched a so-called awareness campaign to protect vulnerable older people from the negative effects of cold weather. The experts advise, for example, on the consumption of hot meals and physical activity.

NHS England and Public Health England employees launched an important campaign to protect the elderly in winter. These often suffer from serious health problems in winter. The doctors published special advice for people over the age of 65.

Winter advice for people over 65:
The advice of the so-called "Stay Well" campaign for people over 65 this winter include:
Always make sure you have enough warmth. Household thermostats should not be set below 18 degrees.

  • Wrap yourself warm when you get cold. Use, for example, blankets or the like.
  • Be sure to consume enough hot meals and drinks. These help you to maintain the required energy level.
  • If you notice the first signs of a cough or a cold, seek the advice of a pharmacist.
  • Stay physically active.

Every year there are thousands more deaths due to winter weather
The current campaign is intended to remind people in winter that food is a very important source of energy for us, which keeps the body warm, the scientists explain. The UK's National Statistics Office said there were around 43,900 additional deaths from the health effects of winter in 2014/2015.

36,300 deaths in people over the age of 75 due to the effects of winter
Research has shown that people aged 75 and over are most affected by the health effects of winter. There are an estimated 36,300 winter deaths in this age group, experts from England explain.

Certain people are particularly at risk in winter
People with health problems such as heart disease, lung problems and dementia are more likely to die during the winter. Reasons for this are, for example:

In winter, the risk of heart failure, kidney disease and strokes is increased
Colder temperatures raise blood pressure, increasing the risk of heart failure, kidney disease and stroke, says Professor Paul Cosford of Public Health England. The cold temperatures cause the blood to clot, which increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes. It also reduces the ability of the lungs to fight these infections, the doctor adds.

Due to the cold, many older people suffer from breathing problems
Research has also shown that at 5 degrees outdoors, any 1 degree reduction in temperature results in a more than ten percent increase in medical consultations for breathing problems in the elderly.

Have your heating checked by experts before winter
Make sure that you have enough heating materials in the house over the winter, the experts advise. You should also make sure that the devices are regularly serviced by an approved heating installer. If all people take better care of each other in winter, it could really make a difference, the authors explain. (as)

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