Winter weather means a higher risk of getting a cold, flu, bronchitis or even COVID-19. Like flu, the coronavirus is a respiratory illness that affects the upper (sinuses, nose and upper throat) or lower (windpipe and lungs) respiratory tract. However, COVID-19 appears to spread more easily, cause more serious illness in some people and make people contagious for longer periods of time. That’s why it’s more important than ever to stay healthy this winter.
How does winter weather increase your chances of getting sick?
Colder temperatures means people spend more time indoors and near other people. This can increase your chances of catching an illness. Dry winter air can also weaken natural mucus barriers in the nose, mouth and lungs, where viruses enter the body.
Four tips to stay healthy this winter
Here are four tips to help you stay healthy during the cold winter months:
- Reduce the spread of germs
Wash your hands regularly, sanitize high-touch surfaces (e.g., doorknobs, phones, remotes and faucets), keep your distance from anyone who is sick, avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and get plenty of rest to keep your immune system strong.
- Eat the rainbow
Fill your plate with dark, leafy greens and a selection of fruits and vegetables to fuel your body with the nutrients and minerals it needs to stay healthy. Opt for lean meats and whole grains as well. Do your best to avoid or limit foods that are high in sugars or fats.
- Stay hydrated
Staying well hydrated helps the body properly transport nutrients to each organ system as well as flush toxins. Be sure to drink plenty of water!
- Stay active
Regular physical activity can help you maintain or lose weight, reduce anxiety, lower blood pressure and improve your sleep quality. All of these things can help keep your immune system strong and help you stay healthy this winter.
The skilled specialists at Coastal Urgent Care Thibodaux hope you stay healthy this winter, but we’re here to help you feel better if you need us. If you’re feeling unwell and your symptoms do not improve—or you think they may be getting worse—please seek medical attention. We’re open for walk-in appointments 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. daily.