If anyone you know is likely to be at risk during severe cold weather, help them get the advice and support they need.
There are a number of things that can be done over the colder months to keep warm and healthy. Staying warm over winter can help prevent colds, flu and more serious illnesses such as pneumonia.
The following groups are more at risk during cold weather periods:
- over 75 years old
- frail, pre-existing cardiovascular or respiratory illnesses and other chronic medical conditions
- severe mental illness
- learning difficulties
- limited mobility or otherwise at risk of falls
- young children
- living in deprived circumstances
- living in houses with mould, and poor heating
- fuel poor (needing to spend 10% or more of household income on heating home)
- elderly people living on their own
- homeless or people sleeping rough
- other marginalised groups
Direct effects of winter weather include an increase of:
- heart attack
- respiratory disease
- falls and injuries
Indirect effects of cold include mental health illnesses such as depression, and carbon monoxide poisoning from poorly maintained or poorly ventilated boilers, cooking and heating appliances and heating.These pages provide information on the practical and financial assistance available and some top tips on how to cut energy bills.