How to Help Elderly Loved Ones Get Ready for Winter

Senior woman adjusting her thermostat

New Jersey winters can be harsh, and even more so for the elderly in our communities. Here are some quick tips from our home health aide services specialists to ensure your loved one will be warm and safe even in the coldest months.

Here’s what home help services for the elderly recommend:

  • Schedule heating system service from a qualified local contractor in advance of your anticipated need. They will start to get busy from October onwards, so the sooner you call them, the better.
  • Make sure that the smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are working. There should be one per room, especially where there is a gas appliance or heater.
  • Place a container with a mixture of salt and sand by exterior doors, so that it can be sprinkled onto icy steps and paving, if needed.
  • Fit a grab rail or some kind of hand support by outdoor stairs and paving to help prevent falls.
  • Stock up on cold and flu medications and take your loved one to their doctor for their annual flu vaccine.
  • Keep a record of prescription medications and collect them early if bad weather is about to set in.
  • Place flashlights with full batteries in a handy place in each room in case of power outages. It’s also a good idea to invest in an external battery charger for a cell phone or tablet.
  • Stock the freezer with nutritious, ready-made meals so that your loved one can stay home easily in the event of a storm or bad weather.
  • Make a plan with a local service provider, friend or family member to clear driveways, sidewalks and paths so they are free of snow.
  • If your loved one is still driving, pack an emergency kit for the car in case of a breakdown. Include food, water, a flashlight with spare batteries, first aid kit, warm jacket or blanket, and insist that they drive with a charged cell phone at all times. It’s important to minimize time on the road during winter because of the additional hazards, so it’s best to arrange transport and take on shopping and chores whenever possible.

Home help services for the elderly in NJ, whatever the season!

At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best home health aide services in New Jersey through our HomeWorks program. This program is about assisting the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and providing them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence.

For more information on our in-home healthcare agency or our residential in home respite care in NJ, please contact us today and visit our website at https://umcommunities.org/homeworks/.

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