Keep warm and keep well say health bosses

WITH Met Office warnings of a cold spell is on its way, NHS Thurrock Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is reminding residents about the actions they can take to keep warm and keep well as the cold weather sweeps through Thurrock.

One of the best ways of keeping well during winter is to stay warm. Dr Anand Deshpande, Chair for Thurrock CCG, said: "Our advice is that when indoors, have plenty of warm food and drinks and try to maintain indoor temperatures to at least 18C, particularly if you are not mobile, have long term illness or are 65 or over. If mobility isn’t an issue keep active as best you can. If you need to go out wear lots of thin layers and wear shoes with a good, slip-resistant grip to prevent any accidental falls."

"This is also a good time to think about how the bad weather may affect your friends and family, particularly if they are older or very young or have pre-existing health conditions. These groups can be particularly vulnerable to the ill-effects of cold so think now what you could do to help."

Here are five top tips to keep your home warm, keep on top of your bills, and keep healthy. Some may seem obvious, but they could help you to stay warmer and maintain good health over the coming weeks.

Heat your home well

By setting your heating to the right temperature (between 18-21ºC) you can still keep your home warm and lower your bills. If you feel cold at night, use a hot water bottle or electric blanket – but never use both together. It is especially important if you’re at home all day.

2. Get financial support

There are grants, benefits and sources of advice available to make your home more energy efficient, improve your heating or help with bills. It’s worthwhile claiming all of the benefits you are entitled to. Visit Thurrock Council’s Ready for Winter page for more: www.thurrock.gov.uk/ready-for-winter/shopping-and-paying-bills

Eat well and have plenty of fluids

Food and water are vital sources of energy, they help keep your body warm. Try to make sure you and your family have hot meals and drinks regularly throughout the day.

Get a flu jab

You can get a free flu jab to protect against seasonal flu from your GP if you are over 65, pregnant, or have a long-term condition.

Look after yourself and others

On cold days try to avoid going outside – however, if you do need to, remember to wrap up warm and take care on slippery surfaces. If you have an older neighbour or relative, look out for them during the winter to make sure they are safe and well.

Dr Deshpande continues: “Encouraging people to keep warm and healthy during the winter is one of our priorities, particularly for older residents and those that spend all day at home. The five top tips show that it only takes a few simple measures to protect yourself and your family from winter-related illnesses and incidents.”

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