We’re here to help you stay well this winter
Some important information from the NHS to help you stay well this winter. If you’re worried about your health, don’t delay, your NHS wants to see you – help us help you get the care you need this winter
Winter conditions can be bad for our health, especially for people aged 65 or older, and people with long-term conditions such as heart or kidney disease, COPD (including emphysema and chronic bronchitis), asthma or diabetes. Being cold can raise the risk of increased blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes.
The cold and damp weather, ice, snow and high winds can all aggravate any existing health problems and make us more vulnerable to respiratory winter illnesses. But there are lots of things you can do to stay well this winter.
Keeping warm over the winter months can help to prevent colds, flu and more serious health problems such as heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia and depression.
Heat your home to a temperature that’s comfortable for you.
If you can, this should be at least 18°C in the rooms that you regularly use, such as your living room and bedroom. This is particularly important if you have a preexisting medical condition. You should also keep your bedroom windows closed at night.
Make sure you’re receiving all the help that you’re entitled to.
There are grants, benefits and sources of advice available to make your home more energy efficient, improve your heating or help with bills. Visit www.simpleenergyadvice.org.uk and www.gov.uk/browse/benefits/heating for further information.
And check your heating and cooking appliances are safe.
Contact a Gas Safe registered engineer to make sure they’re operating properly.
Visit www.gassaferegister.co.uk and www.nationalfirechiefs.org.uk
Fire safety at home
Most fires in the home start accidentally. Understanding why fires start and what you can do to prevent them will help keep you, other people and your property safe.
You can complete an online home fire safety check yourself. After answering a few questions about you and your home, it will provide fire safety advice specific to you and tips on how to keep you and your household safe from fire.
For your free online home fire safety check, visit: www.ohfsc.co.uk
There’s strong evidence that people who are active have a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, depression and dementia. Regular exercise can help improve your mental health, reduce the risk of falling and can be beneficial for recovery if you do get ill.
Try to reduce the amount of time you spend sitting down during the day. Break up your time spent being inactive by walking around your home or standing up from your chair during TV advert breaks or when you’re on the phone.
There are many activities you could do at home, such as walking up and down stairs, dancing, gardening, housework, or taking part in online fitness classes.
It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as it’s something you enjoy and keeps you moving. Don’t do anything that doesn’t feel comfortable and trust your instincts about your own limits. Stop if you are feeling any pain or lightheaded and stay hydrated.
For tips on keeping active go to www.nhs.uk/keepactive or have a look at www.ageuk.org.uk
Our Information hub has advice, guidance and support for you about Mental Health and Young person’s Mental health as well as signposting and links to external sites. We also have a page with information for Parents/Guardians/Carers raising young people with mental health problems here
If you or someone you know needs urgent help for their mental health call 999 or go to your nearest Accident and Emergency department.
Help and advice for out of hours services here
Looking after your mind is just as important as looking after your body, but it can be easily overlooked.
Every Mind Matters has lots of expert advice and practical tips to help you stay on top of your mental wellbeing.
Every Mind Matters – NHS (www.nhs.uk)