If you’ve lived in Topeka or Lawrence for more than a few years, you’ve probably slipped on the ice more than once. Or gone out in the cold without your hat and gloves.
As you grow older, it becomes more difficult to keep your balance on the snow and ice, and falling could mean a trip to the hospital for a broken hip.
Older people also have a higher risk for hypothermia, which in some cases can even be deadly.
Here are some safety tips to help get you through the Kansas winter:
- Salt walkways before a storm. If you know snow and ice are on the way, salt your walkways before they become slick.
- Shovel your sidewalk and driveway. You might want to hire someone to do this for you, so you don’t slip and fall while shoveling.
- Park your car in the garage. It’s much easier to go inside from the garage than it is to walk on snowy or icy surfaces.
- Wear non-skid shoes and boots. Even if your walkways have been shoveled, there may still be a patch of ice here and there.
- Dress in several layers of loose clothing. Layers trap warm air between them, whereas tighter clothing can cause you to lose body heat. Don’t forget your hat and gloves.
- Keep your thermostat no lower than 70 degrees. If you need help with your heating bills, contact the Kansas Low Income Energy Assistance Program.
- Install lights with motion detectors. Lights with motion sensors will come on automatically if you arrive home after dark.
- Talk to your doctor. Ask if any of your medications will increase your risk for hypothermia and if you need to take any additional precautions.