Hope everyone is coping okay in this current situation. I could do with some advice please. I’m sure most of you will have had the same problem. I live with my mum, she’s 92, fully aware of what’s going on around her, still active which is great. However, to her ‘dark’ means ‘cold’. It’s currently 25C, thundering and very humid. Mum has put the central heating on with the thermostat as high as it can go. I’ve asked her if she’s cold, felt her forehead and she’s clammy. As usual I’ve been told to leave her alone, she’s turned the heating off and shut herself in the lounge. It’s an on-going battle and I’m probably not handling the situation very well. I’m genuinely concerned about her health and worried about her overheating. She always takes a hot water bottle to bed with her whatever the weather, even though she has a winter duvet on her bed all year. Any advice would be very welcome please before I collapse from heatstroke.

Hi Olivia,
elderly people who are no longer active often feel the cold, but your Mum is still active, so it does sound as if its more do with a her habit of it being dark.

I could not bear the heating on during these hot days - so I feel for you; not to mention the waste of money.

Is there anyway you can override the thermostat? Some boilers have a summer and winter setting - so you can select heating and hot water or just hot water, does your boiler have this? Would she notice if you turned down the individual thermostats on individual radiators? Or could you let her turn it up and then turn it off a few minutes later? It sounds like reasoning isn’t going to work - though you could try showing her thermometer?


Older people feel cold for many different reasons. I live in a building of older people ranging from 60 to 90+. Many complain of being cold. Some older people always feel cold. Don’t want windows and doors open etc. It’s a lot to do with them being sedentary/inactive. However, it could be a medical issue. Perhaps some blood test just to rule out a medical problem. Also, skin becomes much thinner as we age. And when an older person gets cold. It takes them a lot longer to heat up. Try and keep Mum’s hands, feet and head warm.

Sounds like something very serious, i think you should take her to the doctors, and talk to the doctor about it. It might be just something temporary, well at least it was for some people that i know.