WITH temperatures expected to drop in the coming weeks, Northumberland residents are being urged to do all they can to look after themselves and stay well.
Local NHS officials are reminding people that there are a number of ways they can take care of themselves and others, including elderly relatives and neighbours, to prevent them falling ill during the winter months.
Sue Milner, Director of Public Health for Northumberland Care Trust, said: “With winter upon us and the colder weather setting in, it’s very important to protect yourself against the cold.
“Around half of all deaths that are caused by cold weather are due to heart disease or stroke.
“It’s particularly important for the elderly to keep warm during the winter. Colder weather increases blood pressure and those already with heart and vascular disease are most at risk from developing a stroke or heart problem in cold conditions.
“During colder weather, there is also an increased risk of injury from falls, and people are more prone to seasonal illnesses, such as flu.”
Tips include closing curtains and shutting doors to keep heat in, using hot water bottles or electric blankets, wearing plenty of layers, eating regular, hot meals and drinking plenty throughout the day and moving around at least once an hour to improve circulation.
If residents do get ill, they should choose the most appropriate service for the seriousness of their symptoms.