As the leaves turn colour and begin to fall, the days get shorter, and the shops are stocking their shelves with Christmas decorations, the imminent arrival of winter is undeniable. For elderly citizens, winter is a particularly hard time of year, as the cold threatens their health, and the icy roads limit their independence. If you have a senior loved one who lives at home, November is a good time to prepare your winter checklist:
- Have your heating system serviced, and purchase a portable heater in the event that the heating fails.
- Fix an electric blanket to the bed (old ones need to be checked).
- Check that there aren’t any expired light bulbs on the property, and that there are backup torches and candles in the event of a power outage.
- Ensure that you have a good pair of warm winter boots with gripped soles.
- Check that the medicine cabinet has ample stocks of cold and flu medication (speak to a pharmacist).
- Stock the freezer and cupboards in the event that there is a bad weather snap preventing shopping trips.
- Order prescriptions in advance in the event of bad weather.
- Ensure that someone nearby knows your senior loved one and is willing to help with shovelling or sanding the driveway. It’s also important to have visitors when the weather prevents getting out enough.
- Lastly, speak to your doctor about a flu vaccination.