Cold Weather and Illnesses

Winter is always a magical time of year. Beautiful twinkling lights and decorations are everywhere and we hear the gleeful peals of laughter from children amidst snowmen and snowballs. Families get together for the holidays, and everyone is full of optimism and cheer, spreading joy and gratitude.

The thing is, we don’t want anything else spread among families and communities.  Bacteria and viruses can run rampant in winter months with a lull in immunity.

The incidence of certain illnesses rises dramatically in cold weather. Vitamin D deficiencies and depression spike as we enter the shortest days with less sunlight.  Our sleep cycle becomes more erratic, too, as our melatonin production is altered.

Joint pain and arthritis seem linked to barometric pressure changes as bad weather rolls in.  Barometric pressure is also associated with migraines and strokes. Hypertension and heart attacks significantly rise in the cold with vasoconstriction and stress, while heartburn pops up from eating comfort foods when trying to stay warm.

In wintertime, we’re even more prone to breathing problems like asthma, allergies, pneumonia and carbon monoxide poisoning.  But this jump actually comes from being cooped up indoors during the cold winter months.

Click below for some of the most prevalent illnesses and conditions that occur much more commonly in the colder months of the year.  You might be surprised by what you find out.

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