Winter Blues: Safety Topics - January 2018 - Week 4


Monday - Are Winter Blues Actually a Real Thing?

They are! It is called Seasonal Affective Disorder. Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is a depression that runs in cycles and usually occurs around this time of year. Due to the weather, we are stuck indoors with really low amounts of sunlight. With this we may experience mood swings, a lack of energy, weight gain, and depression; however, there are ways to help prevent these feelings.

  • Try a light box. These have been designed to help you get more exposure to light that is similar to being outside in the sun. Being exposed to these lights for 1-1/2 to 2 hours daily may decrease your winter sadness.
  • Go outside! When days are nicer, go out for your coffee breaks or lunch break to soak in some of that natural light. On off-days, plan or take up a new outdoor activity such as snow shoeing, ice skating, cross country, downhill skiing, or hiking for at least an hour. Not only does this get you some vitamin D, being active helps you feel better and builds endorphins that make you happier.
  • Stick to a schedule. This means making sure you are getting enough sleep at night, physical activity during the day, and also eating a balanced diet.

Tuesday – Vehicle Preparation

  • Check the battery
  • Change tires to winter tires if needed
  • Check tire pressure
  • Change wiper blades and windshield washing fluid to a freezing grade
  • Put an emergency kit in your car or make sure older kits are fully stocked
  • Check belts and hoses
  • Check and make sure antifreeze doesn’t have too much water in it
  • Check 4 wheel drive and ensure that it is working correctly
  • Change oil to one with the right viscosity

Wednesday – Emergency Road Kit

  • First Aid Kit
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Blanket
  • Road map and compass
  • Extra clothing and footwear
  • Paper towel or rags
  • Sand, road salt, or non-clumping kitty litter
  • Flashlight with extra batteries 
  • Non-perishable foods
  • Cell phone
  • Candle in a deep tin
  • Water proof matches
  • Shovel and ice scraper
  • Booster cables

Thursday – Wintry Conditions

Wind can blow snow around creating a blizzard and poor visibility. It can also drive cold temperatures even lower. Snow can accumulate making it difficult to get around and may make certain areas inaccessible. Ice can also accumulate and build up causing trees and power lines to come down. Cautiousness and preparation during these colder months is necessary as we can be affected by extremely cold. Always be prepared, especially when traveling and when in unfamiliar places. Make sure you are aware of the weather conditions of where you are going. Make sure your vehicle is prepared and make sure to plan well and pack accordingly to the weather.

Friday - Free Speech Friday

Have you ever been affected by a winter snow storm? Have you ever traveled to an area where you were unfamiliar with the type of weather conditions and were you prepared for them? Do you also fight winter blues and need to find ways to stay active while in the cold? Even with all our conveniences of heated seats and furnaces’ in our homes, the effects of winter should be taken seriously.

Tags: safety topics , health and wellness , environmental ,

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