How Do I ?

Stay warm in your home

Older people must take steps to ensure they remain well and warm in their homes through the difficult weather at the moment throughout the winter.

We are reminding the general public of the responsibility to call in to their older friend, relative or neighbour, but older people themselves must also take steps to ensure they remain well and warm in their homes this winter.

The reality is that the recent sub-zero temperatures can kill, and do kill, in Ireland.
It is essential that older people aim at keeping the temperature in their homes at 18-20 degrees Celsius. Once the temperature falls below 16 degrees you are at greater risk of respiratory illness, and if it falls below 12 degrees the blood thickens and your risk of heart attack and stroke increases.

Age Action’s top tips to remain well and warm in your house are:

  • If you cannot afford to keep the temperature in your entire house at 18-20 degrees Celsius, concentrate on keeping a few rooms you live at this level;
  • Dress correctly – wear layers, rather than one thick layer of clothing. Maybe wear a woollen or fleece hat in bed;
  • Remain active – don’t stay sitting in the one spot for long periods. Spread your chores throughout the day to ensure to keep moving. Exercise daily, but avoid risks in wet/icy conditions;
  • Eat well – have at least one hot meal a day. Sip hot drinks regularly. Keep a flask of hot drink by the bed, in case you wake up cold;
  • Make sure you use your free electricity or gas units, if you receive the Household benefits package;
  • Keep in contact with family and friends by telephone on a daily basis;
  • Stock up provisions (canned goods and items for the freezer) during any thaw, in case there is further icy weather and you cannot go out;
  • Seal gaps around windows and doors.

Click here for more information on how to keep your home warm.