With the drop in temperature this week, South west London’s top doctor has outlined a few simple steps for people to keep themselves and their loved ones safe and well during these cold temperatures.
Dr John Bryne, medical director for the NHS in south west London, said: “Cold weather can be a risk for anyone, but even more so for our more vulnerable residents, older people and those with long term medical conditions.
“The NHS is always here to help but there are important things we can all do to take care of ourselves during cold weather and following some simple tips can really help.
“Keep in contact with older or vulnerable family and neighbours. Take a few minutes to ask if they need any shopping or medicines and make sure they are warm and comfortable can make all the difference.
“These are challenging times with cost of living concerns, but Simple Energy Advice provides free advice and many organisations are opening their doors and offering ‘warm spaces’ to help keep you warm this winter.
“Remember that cold weather makes us all more vulnerable to a range of winter illnesses such as flu, coughs, colds, so please get your free flu jab and Covid-19 booster vaccination.”
Top tips for keeping well during the cold snap:
- Check on family, friends and neighbours who may be at higher risk of becoming unwell, and if you are at higher risk, ask them to do the same for you
- Check the weather forecast and the news
- Make sure you have sufficient food and medicine
- Take simple measures to reduce draughts at home
- Heat rooms you spend most time in, to 18˚C if you can
- Keep bedroom windows closed
- Wear multiple layers of thinner clothing
- If you’re eligible, get vaccinated against flu and COVID-19
- Get help if needed. Call NHS 111 or in an emergency 999
As part of the new Weather-Health Alerting System the Met Office and the UK Health Security Agency has issued a specific health alert for London.
The system aims to provide an early warning when temperatures are likely to impact on the health and wellbeing of the population.
Exposure to cold indoor or outdoor temperatures increases blood pressure, increasing the risk of heart problems, kidney disease, stroke or dementia.
Cold temperatures can also make blood more likely to clot, which can lead to heart attacks and stroke.