Snow Shoveling Tips to Stay Healthy in 2018

 In Info You Can Use

It’s Monday, which can only mean… snowstorm tomorrow!  Tuesday seems to be the snow day of 2018.

As Winter will be around for a little while longer, I wanted to do a post including some tips and information related to snow shoveling, snow blowing, and even about guarding against heart attack.  So here it is including links for further information.

If heart attack is a concern, please talk to your doctor earlier than later.  If you think you are having a heart attack, call 911 immediately.

Guarding against heart attack:

  • Before you shovel:
    • have you talked to your doctor? If not, make a visit especially if you are not physically active on a regular basis or if you have cause for concern (due to age, family history or other concerns).
    • don’t shovel after just waking up – wait at least 30 minutes
      • avoid coffee and cigarettes at least one hour before or after shoveling as they elevate blood pressure and heart rate
      • don’t eat a heavy meal before shoveling as this diverts blood from the heart to the stomach
    • warm up your muscles before getting out into the cold and tackling the heavy snow
  • When you shovel:
    • use a lighter shovel (there are many varieties out there – choose the one that works for you)
    • pace yourself and take breaks
    • stay hydrated (don’t wait until you’re thirsty – drink water before, during and after)
    • cover your head, neck and mouth to prevent heat loss and to prevent cold air from triggering breathing problems
    • if you experience dizziness, shortness of breath, tightness or burning in the chest, neck, arms or back, call for help!  If you think you are having a heart attack, call 911.


Other Winter Tips:

I also found this great document on the Nova Scotia website with tips on:

  • how to keep warm in the cold
  • preparing your car for Winter emergencies
  • preparing your home for Winter emergencies


For parents and kids, here is a link on Sled Safety because, yes, sledding can be dangerous.  Remember to wear the appropriate head gear – not all helmets are created equal.  Helmets should be a good fit and must be worn properly.



If you are planning on skating on or hiking on or near lakes around HRM, visit the following links about ice thickness.



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