Check daily on elderly friends, relatives and neighbors who live alone.
The elderly and very young should stay indoors as much as possible. Offer to shop for elderly friends and relatives. Just like in the summer with heat, it takes some time to get acclimated to cold weather.
Wear layered clothing outdoors for better protection from the cold. Wear a cap to prevent rapid heat loss from an uncovered head. Cover exposed skin to prevent frostbite.
While indoors, try to keep at least one room heated to 70 degrees. This is especially important for the elderly and small children to prevent hypothermia.
Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages.
Eat high energy foods along with warm beverages and soup.
Sleep warm with extra blankets, a warm cap, socks and layered clothing.
Avoid fatigue and exhaustion during cold weather. Overexertion, such as shoveling snow or pushing a car, can strain your heart.
Carry extra clothing, blankets and high energy snacks, such as cereal or candy bars in your car for protection if car stalls. Keep the gas tank near full to prevent icing. Don't travel alone. For referral to many services for the elderly in the community, call the St. Louis Area Agency on Aging at 658-1168 or 658-1021.
Be careful when using fireplaces, stoves or space heaters to stay warm. Carbon monoxide poisoning and home fires are very real winter hazards. For answers to any questions about using space heaters or any other heating method to stay warm, please call the St. Louis Fire Department at 289-1920 or your local fire department.
For information about emergency shelter, help with heating bills or for any other weather related need, call Operation Weather Survival's Hotline, located at the Human Development Corporation.
Information above from Operation Weather Survival.
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