Snow and ice advice for older people
Anyone can have a fall, but older people are more vulnerable and likely to fall, especially if they have a long-term health condition. The consequences of a fall can be far more serious than one might realise. Generally, falls are a common but an overlooked cause of injury.
According to NHS Choices, around one in three adults over 65 who live at home will have at least one fall a year, and about half of these will have more frequent falls.
Most falls don’t result in serious injury. However, there’s always a risk that a fall could lead to broken bones, loss of confidence and independence.
- Try to minimise the need to go out and don’t be afraid to ask for support. Ask friends or neighbours to shop for you or take you to where you need to go
- If you do decide to go out when there's snow and ice about, take time to think what you can do to reduce the risk of a fall
- Where possible, plan a safe route from your home to where you are going, try to avoid slopes, steps and areas that have not been cleared or gritted
- Don't take short cuts through areas where the slip hazards could be greater
- Ask a friend or neighbour to clear a safe path from your front door
- Wear proper footwear for better traction on slippery surfaces
- Consider using a walking stick or better still, a walking pole and take slow, small steps. Try not to hurry and give yourself more time to get from A to B so you do not rush or feel panicked
- Use rails or other stable objects that you can hold on to for support
- If possible, wear extra layers to protect the more vulnerable parts of your body like your head, neck and spine if you do fall
- Remove as much snow as possible from the bottom of your shoes as you are walking and as you enter buildings
- In public places, always report unsafe conditions so other people do not get hurt
Cold weather can also have a significant impact on your health. Throughout the winter months and beyond it is also imperative that you stay warm and healthy and the NHS has some great practical advice on how you can do this.
To ensure safe conditions on your own pathway or drive why not consider one of our affordable Winter Packs to keep your property safe this winter? Our 30 Litre Mini Grit Bin with Brown Salt and Scoop is easy to store and refill with a handy lightweight plastic scoop for easy dispersal.