HSD Calendar of Events

View online calendar of school and divisional events. Learn More...


Winter has started to set in here in southeastern Manitoba and there are ways for us to keep our health through these next few chilly months.

Dr. Denis Fortier is the vice-president of medical services for Southern Health-Sante Sud. He says there are four categories to consider - snow and ice, cold and wind, viruses, and indoor environments.

In regards to snow and ice, Dr. Fortier says falling can cause sprains or breaks adding there are conditions were motor vehicle collisions are a higher risk, along with heart problems from exerting ourselves while shoveling.

"While we're out shoveling snow, that's definitely hard on our heart. We need to be careful about that. Sometimes there are more cases of angina or heart attacks during the winter months because of the heavy snow and the exertion related to that."

Dr. Fortier says it's important to wear proper footwear which will help prevent slipping on ice, putting salt down on walkways and outdoor stairs, as well as taking breaks while shoveling the driveway to put less strain on the heart.

2012 10 snowy roadDr. Fortier says snow and ice covered roads can be more hazardous.With cold and wind, Dr. Fortier notes the main concerns are hypothermia and frostbite.

"Frostbite is the most common. Basically, when we're faced with too much cold or a cold windchill, our body needs to stay warm, our body works best at 36ºC-37ºC. If we start lowering our temperature some very bad things start happeing to our body."

He says these bad things include the body moving the blood supply away from our extremities (fingers and toes) to keep vital organs warm and supplied with sufficient amounts of oxygen.

"The blood vessels start narrowing so there's less warm blood going to the tips of our fingers meaning our fingers get cold and frostbitten. Sometimes they can die because the cells die from lack of circulation because it's so cold."

Dr. Fortier notes frostbite can appear on our skin as white spots. He says it's best to dress in layers because it's easier to take a layer off if you're too warm then being away from home and not having the ability to add more layers.

"Let's acknowledge that we are living in the north and we do have winter, let's dress appropriately in good boots and layers."

He says he has heard people complaining that winter seems to be getting colder each year, however, he reasons, this is not the case.

"We don't go out as much as we used to. We stay indoors, we don't welcome the cold. We're often just going from point A to point B so we don't get dressed very well because we know that we're going to get into a pre-heated car and then we're going to go to the mall or work where it's heated. I think culturally we've changed and we're not as resistant."

Dr. Fortier says in the months of November to January we are the most prone to being infected with certain viruses including the flu. He adds influenza is a real danger for the elderly, very young, and those with serious illnesses so it's best for everyone to get the flu shot to prevent being infected with the viruses or acting as a carrier.

He notes there are two other viruses, one is RSV or Respiratory Syncytial Virus and the other is the stomach flu. 

"RSV seems to affect our youth quite a bit. It's that loud, barky cough, it sounds almost like a seal when they're coughing. It can get them quite ill and many young children are admitted to hospital during RSV season. Then there's the stomach flu, it just seems to always come around Christmas time."

Janelle Pachal is a CNPA certified product advisor at Good N' Natural. Pachal says keeping our health is a daily process, summer through winter. However, she notes, in winter it's beneficial to kick up the vitamin C, echinacea, and oregano from either supplements or whole foods.

"Germs are everywhere and it's great for kids in school to get their supplements or vitamin C to help prevent carrying it to other kids in their classroom. Same with elderly. As we age our immune system takes more of a beating. But, realistically, everyone should be taking care of themselves and doing the best they can with their food on a daily basis to be protected as much as possible."

Pachal says zinc is also good for the body and can be found in pumpkin seeds, leafy greens, and green vegetables.

Dr. Fortier adds it's also important to wash your hands before preparing a meal, and especially after using the washroom.

Lastly, indoor environments. Dr. Fortier says in winter houses can drop down to humidity levels which are quite dry. 

"Our skin and our mucous membranes, our nose, our mouth, our throat, they don't like 30% humidity levels. They prefer 40-50% humidity levels. So, if we don't take care to ensure that the air is humidified in our house, we're going to suffer from dy and itchy skin."

 He says he also sees a lot of sinus conditions which appear as allergies, while some are true allergies, due to house mites that collect.

"I know we often call summer the allergy season, which it absolutely is, but in the house, especially if you have carpets, we have things called house dust mites that collect and some people are allergic to those."

Pachal says she has found those who suffer from allergies in the summertime have an overactive immune system and are more likely to have colds and the flu in winter, when they're immune system is underactive. 

HSD Calendar of Events

View online calendar of school and divisional events. Learn More...


More Local News

Nearly Two Thousand Dollars Worth Of Groceries Stolen

Steinbach RCMP report nearly $2,000 worth of groceries were stolen earlier this month at a Steinbach grocery store. Last week Friday, RCMP responded to the Real Canadian Superstore on a report of…

Flu Shot Clinics Not As Busy This Year

The number of people attending flu shot clinics in Southern Health continues to drop. Bev Unger is Regional Manager for Public Health/ Healthy Living. She says the number of clinics this year was…

Cell Phone Swiped At Arena

Steinbach RCMP are trying to locate a person of interest, wanted in connection with a stolen cell phone. Police have released few details concerning the incident but say on November 6th, RCMP…

4Runner Stolen In Steinbach

Steinbach RCMP report a Toyota 4Runner was stolen Monday in Steinbach. The black vehicle has a snow plow blade on it and was stolen from the parking lot at Funk's Toyota. If you have any information,…

Large Boost In Traffic Expected In Steinbach By This Weekend

Steinbach will be a very busy place by the end of this week. This weekend is the Atom Classic hockey tournament and Jason Peters, Recreation Programmer for the City of Steinbach says this is one of…

Semi In Ditch On Highway #59 At PR 305

There have been some traffic delays Wednesday morning on Highway #59 at Provincial Road 305. A semi hit the ditch Tuesday evening. Traffic has been delayed while the semi is being unloaded. There are…

Steinbach Chamber Of Commerce Has A New President

The Steinbach Chamber of Commerce board has a new president. Tim Schmitt, owner of Oakleaf Promotions, says he joined the chamber in 2012 and was promoted over the years, gaining experience and…

City To Leave Parking As Is At Mailboxes

Steinbach city council has decided against any changes following a citizen request to limit parking at the community mailboxes along Third Street at Reimer Avenue. Council received a letter from…

Province Announces Funding For New Bothwell Play Area

New Bothwell has been awarded a Community Places grant to assist with construction of a play structure and community space. Lisa Baldwin is Manager of Recreation and Community Services for the Rural…

Truck Stop Flying To Ste. Agathe

With more than 750 locations across the United States and Canada, Pilot Flying J is landing in Ste. Agathe. A very excited Shaun Crew says it is currently under construction in the Riel Industrial…

Government Commits To Making Manitoba Most Improved Province

The Manitoba government has committed to making our province the most improved in Canada by attempting to fix finances, improve services and rebuild the economy. That was the message delivered…

Fifth Annual Operation Red Nose Kicks Off In La Broquerie

Operation Red Nose kicked off with a puck drop on Monday. Organizer Joanne Vielfaure-Romaniuk says this is their fifth season running Operation Red Nose in the La Broquerie and Steinbach areas. She…
2017 11 chris goertzen

City Council Discusses Budget, Cultural And Recreational Facilities

Steinbach city council has not yet finalized its taxation plans for the coming year. The budget was the top agenda item as city council held its fall study session this past weekend. Mayor Chris…

Self Built Homes More Complicated As Of January 1, 2018

The City of Steinbach building inspector says the province's New Home Warranty Protection Act will come into effect January 1st. It will ensure newly-constructed homes are protected against defects.…

Goertzen Says More Health Changes Coming In New Session

A new session of the Manitoba Legislature begins Tuesday afternoon and Health Minister Kelvin Goertzen says we can expect more adjustments to improve the health care system. He gives an example of…

Mexican Runners Embrace Manitoba Cold

A family from the Copper Canyon in Mexico made a stop in Steinbach last week before heading to Churchill for the 6th annual Polar Bear Marathon. The event is organized by Albert Martens of Steinbach…

Thousands Of Shoeboxes Destined For Calgary

Nearly four thousand shoeboxes were collected in Steinbach and area this year for Operation Christmas Child. Debbie de Klein is Area Coordinator. She says Blumenort and Grunthal were the two…

Fuel Tanker Leaks Fuel After It Tips Onto Its Side

An 18,000 litre fuel tanker tipped onto its side about two miles west of La Broquerie just off Highway 52 shorly before 3 p.m. on Monday. Fire Chief Alain Nadeau says the tanker was driving down a…

No Further Bear Sightings Since Sunday

Bear sightings have dropped off in Steinbach. Manitoba Conservation along with Steinbach RCMP were trying to track down the bear after sighting reports early Sunday morning. A spokesperson for…

Some Motorists Not Stopping At SRSS Crosswalk

Stopping at a crosswalk when the lights are flashing does not only save you a few dollars in your wallet but it can save a life. RCMP Community Constable Dennis Redikop says some safety concerns have…

Steinbachonline.com is Steinbach's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

ZUMBA with Marina Morgan

23 November 2017 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

The Steinbach Cultural Arts Centre, Steinbach

Laugh & Celebrate Christmas with Phil Callaway

23 November 2017 7:00 pm

Steinbach Mennonite Brethren Church

Krav Maga: Self-Defense Workshop with Franco Morgan

23 November 2017 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

The Steinbach Cultural Arts Centre, Steinbach


24 November 2017 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Steinbach United Church, Steinbach