The winter season is the most anticipated season by many because it is also the season for Christmas. However, the winter season can also be the favourite season of colds, flu, sore throat and asthma because these illnesses are worsened and triggered by a cold environment. Aside from these ailments, many people also suffer from muscle injuries, broken bones, sprains and strains due to shovelling or falling on icy streets and sidewalks.
Winter Season Ailments
Here are some of the common ailments during the winter season as well as some tips on how to avoid them
Cold viruses love to grow and multiply during cold weather. During the winter season, the immune system also weakens a bit due to the lack of vitamin D from sunshine, thus this is a perfect opportunity for infections to abound. You can prevent being ill with cold by avoiding people who are afflicted with it. Practice good hygiene and wash your hands regularly because cold viruses can spread by touching contaminated surfaces and objects.
Sore throats can be due to a lot of things such as colds, influenza, or throat infections. It is said that sore throats are common during the winter season because shifting from a warm temperature to a colder temperature can affect the throat and cause inflammations in it. Sore throats are also due to runny noses and post-nasal drip. In the presence of a sore throat, a good remedy would be to simply gargle with warm salty water. This remedy can soothe throat inflammation. Lozenges and over the counter cold remedies can also do the trick.
In asthmatics, common triggers would be the inhalation of cold air. Asthmatic attacks are common during the winter and may give out signs and symptoms such as cough, chest tightness, wheezing and shortness of breath. The tip is to stay indoors especially during windy and cold days. If you cannot avoid going outdoors, you can wear a scarf over your nose and mouth and prepare your maintenance medications for asthma.
Winter vomiting is usually caused by a norovirus, an extremely infectious virus that can bring about vomiting and diarrhea during the winter. It is common also in public places such as schools and hotels. Though it has unpleasant symptoms, it usually goes away after a week. You can avoid being affected by this virus if you drink plenty of water and other fluids to avoid dehydration which can be triggered by too much vomiting and diarrhea.
For those who already have arthritis, they would usually experience more painful joints during the winter. This is because the cold weather renders joints stiffer so that it would bring about pain just to move them. However, the cold weather cannot bring about joint damage. To avoid this, you should exercise during winter indoors every day.
Cold sores can also surface out during the winter time, To avoid getting this, you can try hot water baths, increasing your physical activity or relaxing at home and avoiding too much stress.
Some people who have higher risk for heart diseases are prone to heart attacks during the winter. It is best to have yourself checked before winter time by the doctor. Make sure that your blood pressure and your lab results are within normal levels and don't forget to take your maintenance medications.
Most people often experience drying out of skin and eventually develop cracking skin and wounds. You should apply moisturizing creams and lotions after bathing or showering and drink lots of fluids every day.
Winter injuries result from walking on icy grounds and shovelling snow during the winter season. You should exercise to improve your balance so that you will not trip over on ice. You should also warm up your muscles by having at least 10 minutes of exercise before shovelling. Carry only small amounts of snow on your shovel so that you won't hurt your back.
To learn more about coping with the winter season, feel free to read our other articles on this site.