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It is essential that you keep yourself warm at all times.
If your body temperature drops below 35C, hypothermia can occur and this can be fatal. Be aware of the symptoms: shallow breathing, cold to touch, slow weak pulse, blue/grey skin and drowsiness.
There are a variety of simple measures that you can take to keep your body warm.
Add an extra layer of clothing to help you keep warm. It is important to dress for warmth regardless of whether you are indoors or outside.
It is better to wear several layers of thin long-sleeved clothing and trap the heat between each layer rather than rely on one thicker layer. Neck and shoulders can be kept warm by adding a scarf or neckerchief.
Clothes made from wool or fleecy synthetic material are particularly warm. If you are sitting for a long period, a blanket or shawl can help you to keep warm. It is extremely important that if you are wet, change your clothes at first opportunity.
Do not sit for long periods of time in cold weather. Move around at least once an hour to help your circulation and to keep warm.
Even to move your arms and legs or wiggle fingers and toes is enough if you find it hard to get up and about. For those of us who are more mobile, activities such as walking to the shop or vacuuming can stimulate your circulation and make you feel warmer.
Food and Drink
Hot food and drinks consumed regularly throughout the day will give warmth and energy and a hot drink before bedtime can help too. Also, a flask of hot drink by the bed may be useful for those who feel the cold at night.
It may be wise to keep some food stocked up at home so you do not need to leave the warmth on a very cold day.
A hot water bottle, blankets or an electric blanket could be used in bed at night time for extra heat, particularly to warm up a bed before you get into it.
However, electric blankets can be dangerous so it is important to take note of the following advice:
Never use an electric blanket and hot water bottle at the same time as it can be dangerous.
If you suffer from incontinence, you should consult your doctor before using an electric blanket.
Check the type of electric blanket before use as some are not designed to be used throughout the night. Check the energy rating of the blanket as some may be costly.
Setting the timer to have the heating come on for a short while in the morning to take the chill off the house before getting up or at night to heat a room before going to bed is a good idea.
We tell you how you can save on heating costs and heat your home more efficiently.
It could mean life or death during cold spells so try to keep warm at all times.
It is important that we all maintain the pressure on the authorities to alleviate this misery. Click on the iPetition Sign Petition to the right which has been kindly organized by our Friends in the Age Sector Platform.
Show your support in the fight against the Winter Fuel Cut!