Winter is quickly approaching and if you are a caregiver of an elderly person you are probably concerned about their well-being. As a responsible caregiver, you want to make sure you are taking the necessary precautions to make winter time safe, comfortable, and warm for seniors. There are many things that you can do to make sure you are providing proper eldercare for your loved one.

If you are caring for a senior at their home (or yours), it is important to make sure the home is winterized. Are there cold drafts near doors and windows? Check for cool air coming through cracks. Are storm windows in place? Check the heating system to make sure it is working properly. I always try to have preventative maintenance on my heating system in October/November, so as to avoid an urgent problem in January/February. Stack warm blankets and clothing close at hand. Seniors are at great risk for hypothermia, depression and falls during winter months.

Clear Walkways/Porches

Many seniors enjoy getting out for a breath of fresh air when they can. If the elderly in your life is one that enjoys walking around outdoors, be sure to keep walkways clear of snow, ice or any debris that could cause them to slip and fall.

Emergency Preparedness Kit

Create an emergency preparedness kit for the senior. The kit should include a flashlight, charged cellphone, blanket, canned food, can opener and batteries. You can include just about anything in the kit. The kit is to help keep the senior safe until you or someone can arrive to the home. It is a great idea to check the kit often during the cold months to make sure all items are in place and phone charged.

Self-Study for Caregiver Education

If you are caring for aging parents or an aging loved one, educate yourself on the responsibilities of being a caregiver. Most people find these tasks a bit more challenging than expected. Watching educational videos on caregiving experiences can be of great assistance when trying to understand your role as a caregiver.

Your objective is to keep seniors safe and healthy. Wintertime preparation will help accomplish this.