Keep warm

Keep warm

The impact of being cold at home

Severe cold weather can be dangerous for vulnerable groups such as older people and those with serious illnesses. But it’s not just the most severe periods of cold weather that can be a problem. Keeping our homes warm – particularly the living room and bedroom – is important to reduce risks to health even in relatively mild cold weather.

Temperature and the risks




Recommended room temperature for vulnerable groups is at least 18C.

Below 16°C

Reduced resistance to respiratory infection

Below 12°C

Cardiovascular changes increase risk of heart attacks and stroke

Below 9°C

Core body temperature drops and increased cardiovascular problems if exposure lasts for more than two hours


Significant risk of hypothermia

Ensuring your home is adequately heated and well insulated can reduce these risks. If you’re not very mobile, are 65 or over, or have a health condition, such as heart or lung disease, heat your home to at least 18C. Keep your bedroom at 18C all night if you can – and keep bedroom window closed.

If you struggle to keep warm at home you can contact the East Sussex Warm Home Check service for advice and support.

Tips to keep warm and well

  • Check you have had your flu jab if you are aged 65 or over, pregnant, have certain medical conditions, live in a residential or nursing home, or are the main carer for an older or disabled person
  • Wear several layers of clothes to stay warm and stay active in your home
  • Check you have shoes that grip well to prevent falls if you go outside in cold weather
  • Keep good hand hygiene to help prevent the spread of norovirus
  • Check you have had your heating and cooking appliances serviced – carbon monoxide is a killer

You can also check the NHS website for information on staying well in winter and how to get help if you feel unwell.

Top tips

Find out our Top Tips to keep warm and well at home.

DIY draught busting

There are lots of small “Do it Yourself” tasks you can do at home to keep warm. Find out more here

Warm Home Check

Our free Warm Home Check Service can help you get ready for winter. Get in contact now.

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