Winter Wellness: stay well this winter

Posted about 3 weeks ago

The cold weather can make some health problems worse and could potentially lead to serious complications, especially if you are 65 or older, or if you have a long-term health condition.

There are lots of things you can do to ensure you stay well this winter and we have put together some top tips below:

  1. Get your flu jab

Every year the NHS offers free flu jabs to certain individuals to protect them against flu and its complications. The most effective time to have your flu jab is in the autumn, just before flu begins to spread.

The flu strains can change from year to year, which means last year’s vaccine may not protect you from this year’s strain. Anyone who is over 65 years old or has a long-term health condition is eligible for a free flu jab on the NHS.

No vaccine is 100% effective but getting the flu vaccination greatly decreases your chances of getting the flu. If you do get the flu after your vaccination, it will likely not last as long and you will experience milder symptoms. Also, if you are vaccinated it will stop you from being able to spread the flu to others.

For more information about the flu jab click here

  1. Stay warm

During the cold weather, you need to ensure your house is kept warm. Age UK recommends keeping the living room at 21°C, the bedroom at 18°C and the rest of the house at least 16°C.

To keep the heat in, make sure you close doors, keep windows shut and block out any drafts. Putting a blanket around you will also help trap in the heat.

Having hot drinks regularly and eating at least one hot nutritious meal a day will also help you to keep warm throughout the day.

To keep you warm at night use a hot water bottle or electric blanket, but do not use both at the same time. Follow our safety advice on heaters and electric blanket by clicking here.

  1. Keep active

Keeping active in the winter will help you stay healthy. Doing exercises at home will help you still active whilst staying out of the cold.

Keeping active decreases your chances of frailty. If you experience frailty it means you will find it more difficult to overcome illnesses and any minor illness may become more severe.

Try not to sit still for more than one hour at a time, even if by moving and stretching your arms and legs it will help keep you warm.

  1. Wash hands regularly

One of the easiest ways to stay well this winter and protect you from illnesses, is by washing your hands.

Make sure you wash your hands for 20 seconds with antibacterial soap. Follow our step by step instructions on how to effectively wash your hands by clicking here.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6f3rNzR8KM&feature=youtu.be

  1. Medication

Colds, flu and norovirus are all more common in winter. Stock up on cold and throat remedies, so you do not need to go to the pharmacy for medication. Your pharmacist can also give you advice if you are feeling under the weather.

If you do have a prescription, make sure you order it from the pharmacy in plenty of time.

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