Staying healthy during the winter can be a challenge for anyone, but it’s often especially difficult for older adults with compromised immune systems or limited mobility. Fortunately, there are easy ways to stay on track and be more proactive about our health through these icy months. The caregivers at our assisted living community in Gloucester County have put together a list of essential winter health and safety tips for seniors to follow until warm spring weather rolls around!
Eat healthily. It may be more difficult to get outside and exercise, but that doesn’t mean our diets should suffer too. If you or a loved one is struggling, try to choose frozen vegetables over canned and eat plenty of winter fruits and vegetables like cranberries, citrus, and pomegranates. Try to also include fish, poultry, and eggs as well for healthy, lean protein on a daily basis.
Take vitamins. Vitamins are best absorbed through the diet, but it can be challenging to get the right amounts through the winter to keep our immune systems healthy. People tend to be more deficient in vitamin D in the colder weather, due to lack of sun exposure caused by staying indoors more often. With that being said, vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, and fish oils are all good supplements to have on hand if you or a loved one are not receiving enough through your diet and daily habits.
Take precautions exercising outdoors. If you are an older adult who is relatively fit and your healthcare provider gives the go-ahead, there’s no reason why you can’t continue exercising outdoors – just remember to take smart precautions. Wear the proper footwear to prevent slips and falls, follow the weather forecast, layer warm clothing, and don’t forget your sunscreen, hat, and sunglasses for UV rays and wind protection.
Stay in touch. Over the winter months, it can be easy to withdraw and become isolated, as it is difficult to get out and socialize with other people in poor weather. This can lead to loneliness and even depression, a condition to be taken seriously for the senior population in particular. Watch out for these symptoms in your loved ones and in your community, and remember that help is just a phone call away. You can also arrange a daily check-in system with family and friends in the neighborhood.
Stay warm and safe. It’s important to have a professional regularly service all heating systems in the home to ensure that they are in safe working order. Keep heaters away from curtains and other fire hazards, and make sure that there are working carbon monoxide and smoke detectors installed on each floor.
Professional assisted living services in Gloucester County, NJ
UMC at Pitman is part of United Methodist Communities, a network of assisted living communities specializing in high-quality care and support for seniors. Our community in Gloucester County, NJ, is known for its beautiful setting, spacious residential apartments, and wide range of services available all year round for residents. With qualified and experienced medical professionals and caregivers on hand to provide expert assistance around the clock, residents enjoy all the benefits of living independently. Our aim is to encourage residents to “age in place,” through the comfort of familiar surroundings and their private apartment homes – even as their care needs change.
For more information about our assisted living services at UMC at Pitman in Gloucester County, please contact us today or visit our website at: https://pitman.umcommunities.org/
Original blog posted on https://pitman.umcommunities.org/2022/02/07/essential-winter-health-tips-for-older-adults/