Susan Baer

Brrr! Let’s hope that we won’t have a repeat of our recent bad weather, but who knows. Can you say “snow on Easter?” I remember that year, and hope it won’t happen again, but this is Texas, after all, so this seems like a good time to mention some tips and resources that may help you or your friends or neighbors.

In general, cold weather can be tough on all of us as we get older. Chronic conditions like diabetes or heart disease and some medications can affect body temperature. In addition, the natural aging process also means that the body’s metabolic rate slows down, making it not only harder to keep extra pounds off, but making us feel colder in the winter. So, part of the answer is to layer clothing, which is something I learned long ago from my Chicago-raised husband, who knows a thing or two about dealing with cold weather. Another tip is to keep a warm blanket nearby and wear hats, even indoors if necessary (go ahead – make a new fashion statement!)

If your main problem in staying warm is high heating bills, there is help available. If you, or someone you know, qualify as a low-income senior, contact the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs at 888-606-8889 for help with weatherizing your home. You can also contact the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program at 1-866-454-8387 to see if you qualify for help with utility bills. 

Stay warm – spring will be here soon!

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