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4 Winter Health Concerns (And How to Shut Them Out)

The icy, snowy season has arrived with myriad winter health concerns following in its wake. Beyond bouts of cold and flu (admittedly even more stressful during pandemic times), there are many health concerns to be on the lookout for as the temperatures drop.

The following four winter health concerns are among the most common during a cold snap. Be on the lookout and know what to do to stay safe and healthy.

  1. Asthma attacks: Cold winter air often exacerbates issues for asthmatics. Those with the condition should bundle up and cover their mouths and noses when outdoors and keep a rescue inhaler on hand. Vigorous outdoor activity should be avoided on those “deep freeze” kind of days.
  2. Seasonal affective disorder: For many people, winter is a time of great joy and celebration. For others, the grayer days, the earlier nights, the shift in sleeping habits, and the prohibitive nature of the cold and snow can contribute to depression. If you are experiencing feelings of sadness, apathy, or social withdrawal this winter, speak to a doctor about your concerns.
  3. Itchy, dry skin: The seasonal tag team of cold, dry air outdoors, and dry, hot air indoors draws moisture from your body – resulting in dry, scaly skin that can crack and bleed and also itch until you feel you just can’t take it any longer. Moisturization is the key to providing relief. Creams, not lotions, offer better protection – and ample protective gear when you’re out in the elements can defend your skin against windburn, and even frostbite.
  4. Frostbite: Prolonged exposure to the bitter cold drastically impacts the skin and the tissue underneath. Severe cases damage muscle, blood vessels, and nerves. With recent news stories surrounding drivers stranded on roadways during inclement weather, it behooves all travelers to plan ahead for winter health concerns like frostbite. Whenever possible, keep gas tanks filled in vehicles. Pack emergency kits with blankets, gloves, and thermal clothing to keep in your trunk. Bundle up on blustery days. Seek immediate medical attention if you show signs of frostbite.

First Call Medical Center offers comprehensive, compassionate care at our Clarksville and Burtonsville clinics. We regularly provide a wide range of medical services to ward off winter health concerns during the colder months. Schedule a telemedicine appointment today!