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Independent Living

Living Alone? Avoid the Challenges of Home Maintenance This Winter

There’s so much to love about owning a home, but it does come with numerous responsibilities. Often, maintenance tasks can feel never-ending. The costs can quickly add up. Maintenance can be especially challenging during the winter months when homeowners find themselves combating snow, ice and freezing temperatures. 

Discover why so many older adults are embracing a senior living community lifestyle that eliminates the burden of winter home maintenance. 

The Challenges of Living Alone During Winter

If you’re an older adult living alone, the winter can present a number of problems beyond simple home maintenance. These five are among the most common for older adults.

Increased Social Isolation

When it becomes more difficult to meet up with friends and family, social isolation can set in. Social isolation can lead to serious health concerns. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found social isolation significantly increased a person’s risk of premature death from all causes, rivaling smoking, obesity and physical inactivity.

Transportation Limitations

When the snow starts falling and roads are slick, driving can become extremely dangerous or even impossible. This can become especially problematic when you find yourself running low on food or medicine or need to see a medical professional. 

Increased Accident Risks

Winter conditions can make even a walk to the mailbox treacherous. Icy surfaces greatly increase the risk of slipping and falling. According to the CDC, falls are the leading cause of injury and injury death among adults 65 and older. Additionally, as many as 3 million older adults are treated in emergency departments for a fall injury each year.

Temperature Control

There are many things that get better with age. Unfortunately, body temperature regulation isn’t one of them. Older adults lose body heat faster than younger people, allowing conditions like hypothermia to set in even if temperatures in the home are between 60 and 65 degrees. According to the National Institute on Aging, a body temperature of 95 degrees or lower can cause health problems such as heart attack, kidney issues, liver damage and more. To prevent this, indoor temperatures should be at least 68 to 70 degrees.

How Community Living Can Enhance Quality of Life During the Winter 

Independent living options give older adults the freedom to live a life immersed in the passions they love, without the burdens of everyday maintenance and logistics. Here are some of the ways community living can enhance the quality of life for older adults, especially during the winter.

  • Maintenance-free lifestyle. Community living eliminates the need to perform regular household maintenance, as maintenance crews are available around the clock.
  • Social opportunities. Community living includes opportunities to connect with other individuals that share the same interests. Community life puts a wide range of social opportunities at your doorstep.
  • Transportation support.  Most communities offer transportation services that can help you get to medical appointments or run errands. 
  • Skilled care. In a community setting, skilled care and medication management is often available on-site. Plans are customized to meet your specific care needs.

Live Comfortably Year Round at Oak Trace

Life at Oak Trace enables residents to enjoy all the beauty of the winter season, without the work. Conveniently located in Downers Grove, IL, Oak Trace offers access to the culture and amenities of both Chicago and Naperville. Within the 40 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds you’ll find numerous amenities,  including dining venues that offer chef-prepared meals. We also work with each resident individually to craft a unique wellness plan that enables them to live their best life as long as possible.  

Discover more about what a vibrant, active and independent life could be like here at Oak Trace. Please contact us.  

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