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9 February 2012
Age UK Charity Director General Michelle Mitchell said:
“Over a third of over 65s fall each year and snow and ice pose real dangers for older people. Older people worried about falling should ask a friend, family member or neighbour to help out with shopping. For those who decide not to go out, it is important to keep active at home – this will not only improve general fitness which can help to prevent falls but will also generate heat to keep the body warm.
“Winter can be a dangerous time for older people particularly with the current plummeting temperatures. Low temperatures raise blood pressure which puts people at a greater risk of heart attacks and strokes as well as increasing the likelihood and severity of flu and other respiratory problems.
“During this period of cold weather, we would urge people to check on their older relatives or neighbours to ensure they are warm and have plenty of food. We would also encourage people to be good neighbours and clear pathways of snow and ice, if they are able to help older people stay safe.
People in later life who are worried about keeping warm this winter should call Age UK Advice free on 0800 169 65 65, visit ageuk.org.uk or contact their local Age UK to see if they are operating any special services to deal with cold weather spells.”