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Comfort Keepers provides award-winning in-home care for seniors and other adults in need of assistance with daily activities. Our highly trained and dedicated caregivers can help your loved one stay in their home for as long as safely possible—a dream come true for many elders.

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Uplifting In-Home Care Services for Seniors & Other Adults Right Where You Need It. Comfort Keepers Peterborough, ON provides in home care services and senior care in the following cities in Ontario: Peterborough

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Part of the work Comfort Keepers Peterborough does in this community is to connect seniors and their families with the resources they need to live happy, healthy and well-supported lives.

5 Winter Safety Tips For Seniors To Help Them Enjoy The Season

Blog  |  December 15, 2020

Help Seniors Enjoy The Winter Safely With These Helpful Tips

For many seniors, winter is a long and sometimes lonesome season. Colder temperatures, the increased risk of slips and falls, as well as less opportunity for visits with family and friends because of poor driving conditions often lead to significantly more time being spent indoors. It is not uncommon for seniors to feel isolated and depressed during the long winters which is why preparing for a safe and enjoyable winter that includes much needed time outdoors is essential for both physical and emotional wellness. 

Getting outdoors safely in the winter is achievable with a few pieces of basic winter equipment and a little planning. Here are five tips for helping seniors to enjoy the winter safely inside and outside this year.

1. Avoid Slips And Falls This Winter By Planning Ahead

Being cautious around ice and snow is a good idea for most seniors. A fall can result in minor bumps and bruises or more serious injuries to the hips and knees. Either way, a slip on the ice is enough to shake anyone’s confidence and make them hesitate about going outside during the winter, especially seniors. A few simple precautions can make a senior’s chances of slipping on ice much less likely.

  • Salt and sand all stairways, walkways, and driveways regularly. Don’t wait for the ice to build up, keep a small bucket and shovel right next to the door so it becomes part of the routine upon leaving and coming home. 
  • Invest in “cramp-ons” that fit to the bottom of winter boots to increase grip and traction on ice. They may not look fashionable, but they increase confidence and make slips much less likely.
  • If a senior uses a walker or other mobility device, equip it with rubber caps to stop them from slipping around. 
  • Ensure stairways and walkways are well lit so that icy patches can be seen and avoided. 

2. Get Appropriate Winter Clothing To Make Enjoying The Outdoors Safe For Seniors This Winter

The cold temperatures and biting winds can be dangerous for seniors. Being more susceptible to frostbite and compromised breathing because of winter weather causes many seniors to simply avoid going outside. Dressing appropriately for the weather is key for getting outside safely to enjoy the beautiful snowy landscape. Some things to invest in for seniors include the following:

  • Layers! One of the keys to successfully dressing for winter cold is dressing in layers. A cotton base layer, an insulating mid-layer and a water-resistant outer layer can be the difference between enjoying a bright winter’s afternoon and catching a chill. 
  • Proper winter boots are essential to enjoying a winter walk. Whether you are heading out for a walk around the neighbourhood or simply heading to the backyard to feed the birds, prioritize function over fashion and choose a boot that is lightweight but rated for cold weather. (Don’t forget the wool socks!) 
  • If the cold and wind cause your senior loved one to feel short of breath, help them choose a coat with a large hood and an ample but loose-fitting scarf to help block the winter and keep them breathing easy. 

Quote from blog about seniors winter safety

3. Keep A Well-Stocked Pantry To Keep Seniors Safe At Home During The Winter

Sometimes winter gets the best of us and staying inside is the safer choice. Help your senior loved one stock their home with healthy food and personal essentials so they won’t feel the need to risk heading out in inclement weather and can remain comfortable at home. Some basics to keep in the house during the winter include: 

  • Water and candles in case of a power outage or winter storm. 
  • Dried goods like pasta, beans, oats and rice. 
  • Canned goods including soups, sauces, and vegetables.
  • Personal hygiene items like toothpaste, soap, and laundry soap
  • A well-stocked first-aid kit

4. Find Ways To Enjoy Getting Outside Safely 

Getting outside year-round is important to support the physical and emotional health of seniors. One of the surest ways for seniors to get outside and enjoy the winter safely is with a companion. If a friend or family member isn’t available consistently for time outdoors, a caregiver like those available through Comfort Keepers is an excellent option. Having a standing weekly appointment with a Comfort Keeper to head outside for fresh air and sunshine not only gives our senior clients something to look forward to, it minimizes their risk of slips and falls and maximizes their safe enjoyment of the winter. 

5. Get Physical Indoors With Exercise & Activities Suited To Age And Ability

Part of enjoying the winter season safely as a senior involves finding ways to stay active and entertained indoors. Exercise for seniors is essential to their physical and mental health and well-being while hobbies and creative pastimes bring daily doses of joy. With regular exercise and cognitive stimulation, seniors can elevate their spirits throughout the winter months from the comfort of their own home. Some ideas for indoor exercise and activities include: 

  • Yoga and Pilates workout videos
  • Tai Chi or Qigong exercise programs
  • Puzzles and word games
  • Knitting, painting, or other handicrafts

For more senior approved activities for the winter months, read 25 Winter Activities To Elevate The Spirit And Bring Daily Joy To Seniors In Peterborough

Comfort Keepers Peterborough Can Help Seniors Enjoy Winter Safely.

The winters here in Ontario are long and cold. Finding ways to enjoy the season, indoors and outdoors, is an important part of supporting a senior’s independence and wellness. Comfort Keepers Peterborough can help. We offer in-home senior support and our caregivers are ready to support our senior clients in discovering new ways to enjoy the winter safely. To learn more or to book an in-home assessment, contact us today by calling 705-243-4042 or filling out our online contact form.

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