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Baby it’s Cold Outside

The Metro East region of Illinois has experienced record breaking low temperatures.  We are not use to this.  Winter temperatures in the St. Louis Region range from an average high of 40 degrees and average low of 24 degrees.  When the temperature and wind chill drop below zero it seems that many residents are caught off guard.  These frigid temperatures are especially dangerous for the very old.  Older people lose body heat faster.  That is why it is critical that we are checking on our elderly relatives and neighbors.

Tips for elders in cooler temperatures

  • ·        Elders should keep their homes at 68 degrees and above.  Even a slightly colder home can lead to hypothermia.
  • ·       When inside, elders should wear long underwear under clothes and also wear socks and slippers.
  • ·       When outside hats, scarves, gloves, mittens and layers of loose clothing are a must.  Frostbite can happen in a matter of minutes.
  • ·       It important to check with your doctor to determine if any medications being taken can cause hypothermia.

For more tips on how to stay warm check out the National Institute on Aging’s publication, Stay Safe in Cold Weather.  http://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/stay-safe-cold-weather

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