On average there are 1320 deaths from hypothermia every year! Most of them were avoidable. When wintertime comes around, it is important that you start trying to keep yourself as safe and warm as possible. This will prevent you from getting sick.
In order to ward off illness, you will need to be strategic. Being strategic means that you start implementing safety measures to protect your health.
Even if you are doing the basics, you may still be wondering what else you can do to stay as healthy as possible. Here are some cold weather tips that are sure to help you and your family enjoy the winter while staying healthy:
- Eat Healthy Meals
Make sure you eat a lot of carbohydrates before going out. Carbohydrates such as oats, rice, and grains will give your body the right fuel so that it has the energy it needs to keep you warm.
Search the internet to find delicious recipes that you can use to keep things interesting. Try not to eat these grains in one style all the time because you might become bored and stop eating them.
- Layer Clothing The Right Way
One of the best things you can do during the winter is to remember the three-layer rule when it comes to clothing. The first layer of your clothing should fit close to the body and have long sleeves.
Your second layer of clothing should be made out of wool or fleece. The final layer of your clothing should be a jacket or coat. This jacket should be wind and waterproof to guard you against the elements.
Don’t forget to wear a hat because you will lose heat from your scalp as well. Mittens, scarfs, and thick stocks can also go a long way in keeping you warm. Don’t forget to wear winter sun clothing whenever possible to protect you from UV rays.
Use your scarf to cover your mouth, you don’t want to breathe in cold air through your mouth, this is not good for your lungs. The last thing you want is to end up with a bad cold that may possibly lead to pneumonia.
- Get a Flu Shot
Winter is prime time for colds, the flu, and pneumonia. The best thing you can do is to get a flu shot before the winter season arrives. A flu shot is especially important for young children and older adults because their immune system tends to be a little bit more sensitive.
If you suffer from a respiratory illness such as asthma, you should also ensure that you get a flu shot before winter begins.
- Make Use of Your Ceiling Fan
Your ceiling fan can be a great source of warmth during the winter. Here’s how to make use of it. Place your fan on its lowest setting and ensure that you set it to spin in a clockwise direction.
When the warm air in the house rises towards the ceiling. The fan will push it down. This means all the warmth will come down on you.
- Consider Changing Your Windows
Do you have a single pane glass windows? If so, you might want to consider replacing these windows with double glazed windows. Double glazed windows have a pocket of air in between two sheets of glass. This pocket of air acts as a barrier whenever warm air tries to leave the house. It also prevents cold air from getting inside. This means that your heater will have less work to do and you will save on energy costs.
You may also want to consider changing your curtains as well. If you have thin curtains wintertime is the perfect time to change them.
Replace your thin curtains with curtains that are made out of fleece or wool. When the day gets warm you can always open the curtains to let the sunshine in.
- Get a Programmable Thermostat
A programmable thermostat is one of the biggest investments you can make in order to keep warm during the winter. You can program your thermostat to start warming up the house before you arrive home. In this way, you will not have to come home to a house that is extremely cold.
A lot of programmable thermostats now come with an app so you can program it from your smartphone or tablet while on the go.
- Learn a New Trick
If you live in an apartment or work in a building where you don’t have access to the thermostat. When the temperature isn’t warm enough don’t despair there is something that you can do.
You can get the thermostat to work harder to warm up the room by putting ice near it. The thermostat will think that the room is colder and automatically turn up the heat making the room warmer.
- Recognize the Signs of Cold Weather Taking Its Toll
If you start feeling dizzy, confused, exhausted and start shivering then it may be a sign that you are suffering from hypothermia. This is especially true if you have been exposed to the elements without taking the necessary precautions.
If this happens you should seek medical help quickly. Another thing that you may experience is discoloration in the skin. Your skin may become yellow, white or grey in color when hypothermia sets in.
If you experience these symptoms the best thing you can do is remove wet clothing as soon as possible and try to get your body warm near a fireplace or close to a heater. Cover yourself with a lot of blankets and drink warm fluids such a hot tea, chocolate or soup to try to get warm as quickly as possible.
If this doesn’t help consult your doctor.
The winter season can be fun. It usually signals the start of the holiday season, winter sports, and other fun activities that you can do in the snow.
However, there is no denying that the winter season can bring a lot of discomfort. You can help to minimize these discomforts by being prepared and using the cold weather tips discussed here.
If you would like more healthy lifestyle tips, please visit the health and fitness section of our website.