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Ways the Cold Weather Affects your Health

Winter comes with various health risks as it can trigger different conditions such as asthma, influenza, and allergic reactions. The cold winter air is also polluted with mold, dust, and other damaging lung irritants. This is a significant reason why people choose to stay inside, other than the freezing weather. For any winter-related illness or general treatment options, visit AFC Urgent Care Saugus. Here are some common ways the cold weather affects your health.

Heart Conditions

Many people who experience cold winters also experience high blood pressure during the winter. This is due to the cold air causing veins to contract, which can cause or trigger heart conditions such as coronary heart disease. Our heartbeats also increase when we are feeling cold as a reflex by our body to stay warm. This can lead to various disorders and even affect the function of the heart. It’s important to prevent the risk of heart diseases by wearing layers of warm clothes to help keep your body warm. 

Before shoveling outside, it is especially important to prepare the body through small warmups or stretching. The risk of having a heart attack increases in the winter months when it snows, as the body has been sedentary for a while beforehand. 

Immune System Disorders

Winter begins the season of contagious diseases that spread through symptoms like coughing and sneezing. This increases the risk of you and others getting sick when you visit local indoor stores or other public, enclosed areas. That is a major reason COVID-19 is drastically increasing during the winter months. Dust, allergens, and poor air quality can also trigger the flu and other respiratory diseases. 

Flu shots can help lower the spread of influenza and other illnesses, such as pneumonia and bronchitis. You should continue to wear a mask when around others and practice social distancing. It’s crucial to practice proper sneezing or coughing etiquette by covering your mouth with your elbow or a tissue. 

Fractures and Broken Bones

Many people slip and fall through snowy roads and sidewalks in the winter season. This can cause severe muscle or bone damage. Broken or fractured bones are a common reason for urgent care visits in the winter season. To keep yourself safe and healthy, wear shoes that can help prevent you from falling. Textured shoes can create additional friction so you can smoothly move around on snow. Also, use handrails or other support systems to help maintain balance. 

Skin Damage

When the temperature is low, and the weather is dry, the skin starts to crack due to dryness. The dry wind of winter leads to skin damage. This is commonly found on the lips and can cause them to bleed. Eczema and dry skin are common conditions in the winter season. Use moisturizers daily to prevent your skin from drying. Speak with one of our physicians for recommended brands and other treatment options.