Valentine’s Day is a special day to think about the ones you love. Whether it’s your spouse, boyfriend/girlfriend, or your palentine, it’s a day to remind them of how much they mean to you.
With the anticipated snow storm in the North East, seniors need to be aware of the dangers. Make sure you have food for several days, dont go out in the snow. Make sure your cell phone is charged, and if you are the neighbor of an elderly person, check on them to make sure they are ok.
Hypothermia is an issue in the winter months. It happens when your core temperature drops, and the body starts to shut down. Older Americans are more vulnerable to hypothermia because our bodies can’t withstand the cold as we did when we were younger. Additionally some medications you take might also increase your risk. Signs of hypothermia include sleepiness, slowed movement and reaction, slurred or slowed speech and confusion. Many of us turn our heat down in our homes to save money, and that is not a good idea. Make sure your house is at least 68 degrees or higher. If you need help paying your heating bill, contact your local senior center for programs in your area. You should also talk with your doctor about your medications or chronic health issues that put you at greater risk.
The American Heart Association notes that chronic cardio vascular conditions may increase due to the cold. Lower temperatures reduce body heat so blood vessels constrict, limiting the oxygen flow in your body. If you are slim, you are a greater risk. Wear layers of clothing to trap heat and provide insulation. Another medical issue that seems to become worse in the cold is arthritis. Again, talking to your doctor is a great idea to help combat these issues.
Winter may alter your sleep habits. We all know what it’s like to wake up when it’s dark and it’s cold. Our bed is warm, and the ideal thing is to stay right there. Cold weather makes us want to sleep more. Getting extra rest isn’t an issue, until sleep becomes a major part of your day. Keeping a regular schedule can be a big help in avoiding “sundowners syndrome”. Make sure you open your blinds and turn on the lights during the daytime. Find activities to do each day. Many times having a family pet can be a major factor to combat the winter lazies…Your dog needs to go out, and your cat just wants to eat. Our furry friends can certainly help eliminate the winter blues.
With winter can come increased health risks for seniors. Those of us who live in the northern climates, where ice and snow are common place between late October and early April, are at a greater risk of falling. If you live in your own home, and shovel your walk or driveway you might take a tumble. Don’t hesitate to ask for help when it snows. Let someone help you to your car, or use a walker in the winter to provide stability. Inside, be aware that tracking in snow, will eventually result in wet spots on the floor, which also pose a risk. The cold might decrease your mobility, even inside so be wary.
The Masonic Care Community has Physicians on Staff
The Masonic Care Community is proud to have a team of 3 full time physicians on our staff. Dr. Elif Erim, our Medical Director is a Geriatrician, who has specialized in the care of seniors. Dr Erim is joined by Dr. Kevin McCormick, and Dr. Florin Oleanu who provide the very best in care to our Health Pavilion Residents.
On the close of National Rehabilitation Awareness Week, one item in particular that the entire MCC Rehab team wanted to discuss was fall prevention. Falls are a leading cause for admission into our rehab department. During our residents' stay, the MCC team educates our graduates on how to prevent falls, especially with that dreaded four-letter word fast approaching – snow.
Many of us will travel and visit relatives this holiday season. Its a good time to check and make sure your loved one is safe and happy. Here is a recent Masonic Care Community Report with vital information on what you should look for.
For over 120 years, the Masonic Care Community has taken pride in the exceptional care it provides to its residents. At MCC, we not only provide care to those that live here, but we give our residents quality of life through various experiences and activities. Two of our most popular programs, art and music, are often the topic of discussion.
For the next several months, many of us will be dealing with snow and freezing temperatures. For the elderly, this can be a especially difficult time as they are unable to shovel snow and the severe cold can prohibit them from getting outside. Be a good neighbor, check on seniors in your area especially if you notice that snow has not been removed from driveways or walks. Here are some other ways to keep seniors safe this winter