So it turns out that you can’t actually catch a cold from a cold.
But, cold weather increases your chances of developing a number of deadly conditions as immunity plummets.
This is because cold weather weakens the body, making it harder for the immune system to fight disease and regulate itself.
1. Blood clots
Sudden changes in temperature cause heat stress on the body, which has to work harder to keep its temperature constant.
In particular, research has shown that this makes people more likely to suffer from dangerous blood clots in the winter.
The study authors, from a hospital in Nice, France, suggested that respiratory tract infections, more common in winter, could make patients more vulnerable to blood clots.
They also suggested that cold weather could cause blood vessels to constrict, making blood clots more likely.
According to stop the clotsigns of a blood clot in the leg or arm include:
- pain or tenderness
- skin warm to the touch
- redness or discoloration of the skin
Signs of a blood clot in the lung include:
- labored breathing
- chest pain that worsens with deep breathing or lying down
- coughing up or coughing up blood
- faster than normal or irregular heartbeat
2. The flu
Flu cases are expected to explode in the face of a ‘super cold snap’ of the weather currently blanketing Britain, experts have warned.
Dr Conall Watson, consultant epidemiologist for the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said that while some have already received the flu vaccine, the UK needed to go “one step further there this winter.”
He explained: “Temperatures are dropping and winter is approaching. Flu usually spikes at this time of year, so if you’re eligible for an NHS flu shot and haven’t had one yet, book as soon as possible.”
“We’ve already met the World Health Organization target for flu vaccination in people 65 and older, but we must go further to make sure more people are protected this winter.”
The flu is worse in the winter months and cold weather can exacerbate the symptoms of the common illness.
The symptoms of the flu are very similar to those of a very bad cold.
A high temperature had previously been a symptom of covid, but experts said this is less likely with the Omicron strain.
You will also experience body aches and a dry cough.
You may also have difficulty asleeploss of appetite and feeling or being sick.
Asthma UK experts say winter can be a dangerous time for people with asthma, as cold weather, colds and flu, chest infections and mold are more common and can trigger life-threatening asthma attacks. .
They explained that these attacks cause the airways to swell, causing symptoms such as coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath.
“Make sure you carry your reliever inhaler (usually blue) with you at all times and continue to take your regular preventer inhaler (usually brown) as prescribed.
The simple scarf could also save your life.
“Make a ‘scarf’: Wrap a scarf loosely over your nose and mouth to help warm the air before they inhale it, as cold air is another trigger for an asthma attack.
“It might also help to stick to indoor activities when the weather is particularly cold,” they advise.
According to the National Health ServiceThe main symptoms of asthma are:
- Wheezing (a whistling sound when breathing)
- a tight chest
4. Heart attacks
People exposed to cold weather are more likely to have a heart attack, a new study has revealed.
Swedish researchers from Lund University in Sweden found that the average number of heart attacks per day was significantly higher when the weather was cold compared to when the weather was hot.
In the day to day it was translated to four more heart attacks per day when the average temperature was below freezing.
The risk of heart attacks is believed to be higher in Cold weather because the body responds to the sensation of cold by constricting the superficial blood vessels.
This decreases the heat of the skin and increases the flow of blood through the arteries.
The body also begins to shiver and your heart rate increases to keep you warm.
But these responses can add additional stress to your heart.
According to the NHS, the symptoms of a heart attack may include:
- chest pain: a feeling of pressure, heaviness, squeezing, or tightness in the chest
- pain in other parts of the body: pain may feel as if it spreads from the chest to the arms (usually the left arm is affected, but can affect both arms), jaw, neck, back, and the belly (abdomen)
- feeling lightheaded or dizzy
- difficulty breathing
- feeling sick (nausea) or being sick (vomiting)
- an overwhelming feeling of anxiety (similar to having a panic attack)
- coughing or wheezing
- Although chest pain is usually severe, some people may experience only mild pain, similar to indigestion. While the most common symptom of a heart attack in both men and women is chest pain, women are more likely to experience other symptoms, such as shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting, and back or jaw pain.