The 14 Words

Monday, 28 October 2013

UK: 24,000 will die from cold this winter and 6m fear they cannot heat their home

More than three million older people are worried about staying warm indoors this winter – with six million anxious about rising fuel bills, says Age UK.

The charity said its research shows many are unaware of the potentially fatal consequences of living in poorly heated housing.

Cold temperatures endanger the elderly by increasing the risk of flu, chest infections and other respiratory problems, and their severity.

Being cold also pushes up blood pressure which may trigger heart attacks and strokes.

Almost one in four people (22 per cent) taking part in the research did not know that a number of serious health problems are made worse or brought on by the cold.

This rose to 29 per cent amongst people aged 80 and over.

Fewer than one in 10 Britons aged 65 and over are aware that strokes can be brought on by the cold in winter, with only 14 per cent recognising that the cold can impact on heart attacks.

The survey marks the launch of Age UK’s Spread The Warmth winter campaign, which is aimed at cutting the 24,000 excess winter deaths that occur nationally each winter.

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