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Winters in California bring a variety of weather patterns. Whether you live in a region that has freezing temperatures, or simply temperatures that drop into the 40s at night, the colder weather in winter can negatively impact health and safety if we are not prepared. Winter is a beautiful season that can bring enjoyable outdoor time, and cozy moments indoors. Ask a friend or loved one to check in on you when the temperature drops. Have a backup plan in case of a power outage. Be prepared and be well in every season. Here are 5 suggestions for safely navigating cold weather:
1. Proper footwear is always important, and even more so in winter. There are higher risks of slipping and falling in rain, snow and ice. Properly fitting, non-slip shoes may decrease your risk of falls and injuries.
2. Monitor your temperature. Older adults lose body heat faster than younger adults do. A body temperature of 95 degrees or lower can lead to a heart attack, liver damage, kidney failure and other health concerns. Dress warmly in layers, even indoors. When going outdoors, wear a hat and gloves. If it’s raining or snowing outside, wear a waterproof coat. Change out of damp clothes right away when you come indoors again. If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. Alcohol can make you lose body heat.
3. Be mindful of the temperature in your home. Your home heat should be set to at least 68-70 degrees. Consider using thermal window coverings to keep out the chill. Close the door to rooms you don’t use. (If you are struggling financially and have trouble paying your heating bills, the National Energy Assistance Referral Service may be able to help you. Contact them at 1(866) 674-6327 or email firstname.lastname@example.org)
4. Spend time in natural light. The shorter days and longer nights of winter can negatively impact our internal rhythms, making us feel more tired and less motivated. Spending time in the sun can help be energizing and mood boosting.
5. Eat a balanced diet. Getting the proper nutrients is important to keep your immune system strong and ward off illnesses that tend to thrive in colder weather.
DISCLAIMER : This article contains information that is intended to help the readers be better informed regarding exercise and health care. It is presented as general advice on health care. Always consult your doctor for your individual needs. Before beginning any new exercise program it is recommended that you seek medical advice from your personal physician. This article is not intended to be a substitute for the medical advice of a licensed physician. The reader should consult with their doctor in any matters relating to his/her health.