Staying warm and well in the cold weather

People in Sussex are being urged to stay warm and well as cold health alerts have been put in place by UKHSA and the Met Office until midday Friday 19 January.
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The cold weather can be bad for our health, but it can particularly impact older people with pre-existing medical conditions, as well as increase the risk of chest infections and other respiratory conditions.

People with respiratory issues such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease (COPD) are being urged to ‘Protect Your Lungs‘ this winter to reduce the risk of serious illness. Top tips include:

  • Avoiding crowded places
  • Avoiding anyone unwell
  • Avoiding enclosed spaces
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It’s important for everybody to take steps to stay warm and well during the colder months. Keeping your home heated to at least 18 degrees, if you can, layering up with clothing, having hot meals and drinks can all help prevent you from becoming unwell or speed up recovery from infections. Keep an eye on the weather forecast and news for the latest updates and check in on friends and neighbours who may need a bit more help when it’s cold or icy outside.

A spokesperson for the NHS in Sussex said: “Cold weather can have serious consequences for health, and older people and those with heart or lung conditions can be particularly at risk.

“If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you should heat your home to a temperature that is comfortable for you. Try to heat the rooms you use most, such as the living and bedroom, to at least 18°C if you can and keep your bedroom windows closed at night.

“With temperatures set to continue to fall through much of the coming days, we are urging people in Sussex to take extra care of themselves and to check in with their loved ones to ensure they are staying safe and keeping warm.

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Sussex NHS is reminding anyone struggling to heat their homes to ensure they get all the help they are entitled to. Grants, benefits and advice are available to make homes more energy efficient, improve heating or help with bills.

Find out more ways to save energy in your home from GOV.UK, or call the government helpline on 0800 444 202.

Sussex NHS is also calling on the most vulnerable to take extra care, and people are being reminded to look out for others. Those worried about a relative or elderly neighbour can contact their local council or call the Age UK helpline on 0800 678 1602 (8am to 7 pm daily).

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