Keep Well This Winter: Time for Family Health Checkups


Nobody’s in a huge rush to go and see the doctor, particularly not when there are lots of fun things to do either outside in the snow or inside with hot chocolate. However, in the colder months, every member of your family could be at risk in one way or another. Winter is prime time for slips (from falls to road accidents), illnesses (not just the common cold, as asthmatics tend to suffer more in winter) and even depression, which can be a result of being cooped up and restricted in what you can do. Guard against all of these risks and make sure you get your family checked up at the doctors.


Elderly members of any household need to take extra care when guarding against the cold weather, as they are more vulnerable to many of its dangers. Slips and falls can result in much worse injuries to those who struggle to get around, and even common colds should be taken a little more seriously. This means making the trip to a doctor’s surgery to make sure it doesn’t get worse, and to ensure that they aren’t at risk of anything more dangerous like pneumonia. They may also be entitled to receive free or reduced-cost flu jabs, which will help to keep them protected.


The parents in a household tend to be depended on by all other members of the family, so it can have a greater effect when they fall ill. Make sure you know who will be able to chip in if an adult in the household is immobilised by cold or flu, like a relative, family friend or neighbour. It’s also one of the most common times of year for adults to feel depressed and demotivated, which can be detrimental when there’s so much to do, like clearing snow from the drive, cooking up a hearty winter meal and driving in the difficult conditions so that everybody can get around.


Children often don’t like to get wrapped up in the many layers needed to keep them safe, particularly when it’s so warm inside, but it’s important that they do when they play outside. If they’re distracted having fun, then they may not realise how cold they are, which could put them in danger. Expect a few colds and try not to worry too much about them, but they should see a doctor at the first sign of worrying symptoms. Another danger is them slipping in the road, so take extra precautions to keep them away from the roadside where possible.


Humans aren’t the only ones who can have a tough time getting through winter. We all need to make sure our pets are healthy and ready for winter, and that means booking an appointment with a reliable veterinary service like for check-ups and advise. Many families will avoid walking their dog so much in the colder months, which isn’t fair, as they have no other way of exercising. Cats, however, can spend too much time out in the cold, and they might be at a greater risk of a road accident when the roads are icy. It’s essential that your pets don’t get ignored when the family is dealing with winter, so any illnesses or injuries can be spotted and treated immediately.


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