The most vulnerable population during the winter seasons is the young children, the older adults and the people who are chronically ill. The bitter and freezing temperatures pose a high risks for illness as well as major injury for everyone.
The common ones are:
Colds and flu
According to many researches the adults gets at an average of three colds a year and every 1 out of 5 adults suffers from flu. Though cold and flu are not only specific to the winter months only, but they are much more prevalent during the winters. It has been suggested by one of the Welsh studies that the cold temperatures can actually lead to a cold thereby limiting the supply of infection-fighting white blood cells in the nasal passage, where the cold viruses most often takes the advantage of entering the body. Along with this the research also shows that the virus of the flu stays much more longer as it is more stable especially when the air is cold and dry.
- Symptoms: As the symptoms of the cold and the flu are similar to each other it is very much difficult to identify the cold from flu. When the cold sets in it is susceptible for you to fee a dry with scratchy sore throat, along with headache and sneezing, with runny nose, chills, and watery eyes thereby leading to fever. After this the major symptoms would consists of sinus pain, a blocked nose, a cough that keeps you awake all night, loss of appetite, tiredness and muscle pains and aches. Flu symptoms are very quick which basically includes 100 degrees to 104 degrees of fever along with all the other symptoms of cold.
- Precautions:It is very much natural for you to feel quite sick for some days but the mentioned symptoms would clear up in a week or maximum in 10 days. Mostly the people recover from the flu within a week. But it should be taken care with correct medicines and care. There is primarily no specific medicine for cold, but talking in some of the medicines would let your body fight off the virus slowly thereby curing you. Don’t opt for anti-biotic as they don’t work for viruses and can have major side effects. For flu a flu shot is enough for your body to fight the virus, but on the other hand the recommendation of zanamivir (Relenza) an inhaled drug can be taken for people from 7 to the older age.
Frostbite are liable to cause a loss of feeling and color especially when it is in the affected areas, such as the nose or in the ears or it can also happen in the cheeks, chin, fingers or even on the toes as well. Frostbite may be termed to be a dangerous thing. It is because it can permanently and completely damage the body tissues and even the severe cases can lead to amputation. The risk of frostbite is specially increased in people who have a reduced blood circulation and it again happens when people expose themselves to the cold weather by not dressing in a proper manner.
- Symptoms: The major signs of frostbite actually include a reduced blood flow towards the feet and the hands which may lead to the freezing of the fingers and toes along with numbness, tingling or stinging, aching, and bluish or pail, waxy skin.
- Precautions: In order to prevent frostbite you must wear warm clothes, and dresses which have layers, especially when you are outdoor for a considerable good amount of time and always keep your clothes dry because wet clothes increases the chances of heat loss. When you are feeling the symptoms of frostbite, you must enter into a warm room as soon as possible. You must immerse the affected area in warm water. Don’t massage that area which may cause damage. Please avoid using a heating pad, or even a heated lamp, or the stove heat, being in front of the fireplace, or a radiator for warming since the affected areas are insensible and has an easy chance of getting burned.
When there is a drop in the temperature, children require extra attention and care. Some of the tips to protect the children are:
- Use Thick layers:The children must be covered with many layers of clothing and you must make sure that your child is well covered in the areas of head, neck and hands.
- Beware of clothing hazards:You must be very careful about the scarves and hood strings which can strangle smaller children.
- Check in on warmth:You must tell your children to go inside in case they are wet of feeling cold. Then protect them with all the necessary stuffs like giving them warm food and changing their clothes with warm ones.
- Use sunscreen:Children along with the adults can get sunburn in winter as well. Hence apply sunscreen.
- Install necessary alarms:The household fires mostly happen during the winters. Hence make sure of having smoke and carbon monoxide alarms at your home.
- Get well equipped:You must be aware whether your child is wearing helmets during snowboarding, skiing, sledding or playing ice hockey. Any kind of sports equipment should be well and professionally fitted.
- Teach normal technique:Make sure your children know all the techniques of the winter fun activities and teach them the same.
- Prevent nosebleeds: In case the child suffers from winter nosebleeds in a minor way, use the cold humidifier in their room. Keep their nose moist by saline nose drops.
- Keep them in a hydrated manner:Try to keep your child hydrated by giving those warm drinks or soups etc. as in winter the kids lose more water through their breath.
- Watch for all the danger signs:The signs of frostbite are grey, pale or blistered skin especially in the areas of ears and nose. Keep your child indoors if you think they are suffering from frostbite and put the affected area in warm water. Call for the hospital if necessary.
Contented by: Kidsorthopedic.com