10 winter health myths exposed – Part II

Posted on by

In previous post we exposed some interesting winter health myths. Here are few more –

Myth #6: You lose most of the heat from your body through your head, so you need to wear a hat.

We’ve all heard this one — and perhaps it worries you when you’re out with your children during the winter months. If they don’t wear a hat in the cold, is it drawing dangerous amounts of warmth from their bodies? Not really, it’s largely a myth. While it’s true that you’ll lose heat from any part of your body that is exposed to the elements and not covered with clothing, forgetting a hat is not a major health risk. You’re no better off in shorts and a hat than warm pants and no hat. The bottom line: A hat is great in cold conditions, but if you leave the house without one to take the dog on a walk — no biggie. A warm coat is much more important to keep you insulated.

Myth #7: You don’t need sunscreen in the winter.

It’s cold and cloudy, so you can retire your sunscreen until sunny days at the beach this summer, right? Wrong – The sun and UV rays are present winter, spring, summer and fall. It is recommended that you wear a sunscreen with SPF 30, and it’s best to wear a UVA/UVB blocker. The best ones contain zinc or titanium.

Myth #8: Allergies go away in the winter months.

Allergies might be the real source behind your stuffy nose and scratchy throat this season. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, one in five people suffer from indoor/outdoor allergies, and the indoor variety can actually be worse in the winter. Pets don’t spend as much time outdoors, shut windows seal in poor air quality, and many molds even thrive in the winter. If your symptoms last longer than 10 days or ease up after taking an antihistamine, it might be time to visit an allergist.

Myth #9: Drinking alcohol warms you up.

Alcohol makes you feel toasty on the inside, but that’s because it causes your blood to rush toward your rosy-red skin and away from your internal organs. That means your core body temperature actually drops post-sip. What’s more, alcohol actually impairs your body’s ability to shiver and create extra heat.

Myth #10: Dry skin is just a harmless winter annoyance.

Itchy, flaky skin can be an irritating and unsightly consequence of cold, dry air. But should you just write it off as a winter annoyance? No, dry skin, if not kept at bay, can be a portal for infection. It’s very important to keep dry skin hydrated. When skin becomes dry, it can lead to small cracks that can leave your body prone to infections. To prevent this, moisturize twice daily — after you shower and before bed — as well as throughout the day for body parts that are prone to dryness, like your hands.

Comments are disabled