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What’s Your Emergency Plan for an Elderly Loved One during Winter?

Senior Home Safety in Philadelphia PA

You have an aging loved one who is basically living alone, but either in the same town or close enough to you where you can stop by and help out every once in a while. During winter, it’s important to have an emergency plan for yourself and your family, but also for this elderly individual.Senior-Home-Safety-in-Philadelphia-PA

First off, what is your personal emergency plan?

Do you have one? Unfortunately in the United States, few people have emergency plans in place for anytime of the year, winter or otherwise. We have become far too complacent and are ill-prepared for most emergency situations.

Take, for example, a loss of power. If your home were suddenly to lose power for a week or two weeks, what would you do? What if your entire town, county, or state was suddenly without power for an extended length of time? Would you be able to survive?

One of the first things to happen in these emergency situations is people rush to their local supermarkets, grab up as much bottled water and other nonperishable food items as they can, and if you are not in that initial rush, there might not be anything left over for you.

As a result, you could find yourself quickly in a life-threatening situation.

Hopefully nothing like that happens anytime in the near future, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have an emergency plan in place for just about any time of the year, but also during winter.

For seniors, especially those who live alone at home, winter can be an extremely dangerous time of the year. Most parts of the country will experience freezing temperatures at least for a while, even if it is only for a few days. Even northern Florida and Southern California can experience extremely cold temperatures every once in a while.

For most of the rest of the country, freezing temperatures are much more common. The colder the temperature is outside, the more life-threatening it can be for anyone, but especially those whose strength has diminished, who may not have the ability to stay warm like they could in their youth, and whose immune system may be compromised.

It’s a good idea to have an emergency plan for winter in place for any senior living at home alone. That should include escape routes, putting together bottled water, storing it in an accessible place for the senior, emergency phone numbers, and it may be more practical to have a landline phone, just in case the power goes out for an extended length of time.

Using VoIP phones (those connected through the Internet) useless in the event of a power outage. Cell phones may not last long without a constant charge.

Make sure the senior has a good emergency plan. Then, it’s a good idea to put one together for yourself as well.

If you or an aging loved one are considering home care services in Philadelphia, PA, contact the caring professionals at Reliant At Home Care today 610-200-6075.


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Cerie Goldenberg, MSW,LSW

Cerie Goldenberg- My name is Cerie Fish Goldenberg. I have dedicated all 40 years of my professional life practicing Social Work in Montgomery County, PA.I earned aMasters Degree of Social Work from the University of Toronto and I am a Licensed Social Worker in Pennsylvania.I was an active participant in the growth of Montgomery County Office on Aging and Adult Service developing needed services and resources for both younger and older adults.

After40 years of being a problem solver and advocate for those in need including my parents who lived into their 90’s and chose to remain in their home, I remain passionate about providing the highest level of service possible to those individuals for whom we are providing care.It is my vision that those of us who choose to remain in their home to be given the opportunity to do so in a safe and dignified manner. Hence the birth or Reliant at Home Care.

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