Snow removal is fun and it can be difficult depending on the state of your health at the time. Take a look at these tips regarding snow removal for your own safety:
- If you are asthmatic, make sure you are well controlled with your medications before shoveling. Cover your mouth/nose with your scarf to warm the cold air. That will help cut down on triggering an asthma attack.
- If you are developing any pain from shoveling, STOP!
- Take frequent breaks.
- Shovel with neighbors just in case you have any health problem while you are outside, they can help you.
- If you have a heart condition, back issues or other chronic/acute condition that shoveling may aggravate, you might consider having someone else shovel or pay someone to do the job. It is not worth the risk of jeopardizing your help or risking injury.
- Call 911 if you are experiencing any of the following:
- chest pain
- radiating pain up your arm or to your neck
- excessive sweating
- weakness, lightheaded or faint
- prolonged shortness of breath
NB: Diabetics may not feel chest pain when having a heart attack like a person without diabetes. Please pay close attention to how you are feeling while shoveling.
- Dress warm and in layers and with light clothing.
- Wear waterproof clothes especially if it is still snowing.
- Wear boots! Make sure you have non-skid or no-slip rubber soles.
- Mittens are better than gloves as they will keep your hands warmer.
- Use a shovel that is lightweight. Plastic is better than metal.
- Hold your hands spaced out on the handle to increase your leverage.
- Make sure your shovel is appropriate for your height and strength.
- Use a silicone lubricant on the shovel. This will help the snow slide off easier.
Healthy people shoveling want to stay healthy. Those of you with health challenges don’t want to compromise your health any further. Make smart choices when it comes to snow shoveling.
Spread the joy,
Donna Marie Laino, RN