Ilkeston health chiefs issue cold weather safety advice

Editorial image
Editorial image

As severe cold weather alerts are issued health chiefs in Erewash have offered advice to stay safe and healthy.

Following a Level three cold weather alert issued by the Met Office for the East Midlands, health chiefs at NHS Erewash Clinical Commissioning Group are urging people to stock up on food essentials, keep warm indoors, take care when walking on icy or wet surfaces and to look out for others who are potentially more vulnerable to the effects of cold weather.

The Met Office has reported that there is a 90 per cent probability of severe cold weather and icy conditions up to Thursday.

Dr Avi Bhatia, Chair of NHS Erewash CCG, said: “The impact severe cold weather can have on our health is often underestimated, but by taking a few simple measures the effects can be minimised.

“If you are particularly vulnerable to the effects of severe weather, ensuring you are stocked with food and medications in advance makes all the difference as it means that you can keep safe indoors until the bad weather has passed. If you aren’t able to stock up yourself then see if you can have deliveries or ask a friend or family member to help.”

“When indoors, have plenty of hot food and drinks to stay warm 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.”

Top tips to stay safe in colder weather:

Look out for friends and family who may be vulnerable to the cold and ensure they have access to warm food, drinks and are managing to heat their homes adequately.

•Try to maintain indoor temperatures to at least 18C, particularly if you are not mobile, have long term illness or are 65 or over.

•Stay tuned for weather forecasts, ensure you are stocked with food and medications in advance, have deliveries or ask a friend to help.

•Take weather into account when planning your activity over the following days.

•Avoid exposing yourself to cold or icy outdoor conditions if you are at a higher risk of cold related illness or falls

•Discuss with friends and neighbours about clearing snow and ice from in front of your house and public walkways nearby, if unable to do so yourself.

For more advice on winter wellbeing see www.nhs.uk/asap