As the cold weather draws in, our advice line team have got some top tips to keep you well this winter.
- Make sure you have a yearly flu jab. It’s free if you’re aged 65 and over, or if you’re a carer or have certain long-term conditions.
- Order repeat prescriptions in plenty of time, particularly if bad weather is forecast. Ask your local pharmacy if it offers a prescription pick-up and delivery service.
- Keep simple cold, flu and sore throat remedies in the house. Your pharmacist can make suggestions and advise you on how to manage minor illnesses.
- Hot meals and hot drinks will keep you snug and warm. Keep extra food items in the cupboard or freezer in case it’s too cold to go shopping. You could do your food shopping online and get it delivered to your door. Hot meals can be delivered too, contact Meals on Wheels in Leeds on 0113 378 3750 for more information.
Get your home winter ready
- Make sure you can check the temperature in the living room (ideally 21oc) and bedroom (ideally 18oc). If possible have a simple thermometer.
- Check you are on the best deal with your current supplier. Make sure you are getting all the financial help you can – up to £20 billion of benefits go unclaimed each year. The Green Doctor is a free service in Leeds to help you switching suppliers, applying for the Warm Homes Discount, as well as grants for insulation and central heating. Green Doctor can also install simple energy-saving measures including: Energy-efficient light bulbs, Draught excluders, Reflective radiator panels, Hot water tank jackets, and Water saving devices. Contact 0113 238 0601 for more information.
- If you’re worried about walking your dog in icy weather, contact The Cinnamon Trust 01736 757 900. They may be able to match you with a dog-walking volunteer in your area.
- Consider fitting a grab rail if you have steps at your front or back door. The Home Plus Service in Leeds includes the installation of rails and equipment to reduce the risk of falls. Contact 0113 240 6009 for more information.
- If you fall or you’re unwell, a personal alarm connects you to a 24-hour call centre. You press a button on a pendant you wear around your neck or as a wrist band and talk to someone who will contact a chosen person to help you – usually a neighbour, friend or relative – or the emergency services. Contact Telecare in Leeds on 0113 3783290 for more.
- If your area is liable to floods, sign up for free flood warnings from Floodline 0345 988 1188. Sign up to utility Priority Services to be informed of planned power cuts, and receive additional support during unexpected power failures.
- Write down emergency numbers, such as utility companies, and keep it by your phone.
If you would like more information, tips or advice, contact our advice line on 0113 380 4300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.