Chilly? Tips for Staying Warm

Winter makes you shiver? Researchers asked one group of volunteers to think about lonely times and another group to think about times spent with friends. When asked to guess the temperature of the room they were in the lonely folks felt it was up to 20 degrees chillier than the friend-focused group!

Winter is the time to keep warm at home with deeper emotional connection with loved ones. Reading or talking and sharing by the fire is a wonderful seasonal activity.

Insulate the back side of the attic door. Insulate your home as much as possible. Hang blankets over windows and doorways and stay in a well-insulated room.

Check your windows and doors for gaps and holes that allow heat to escape and make your home drafty and less comfortable. Use inexpensive weather stripping and door sweeps to reduce air leaks around entry doors

Wearing a hat stops some heat loss. Wearing warm slippers will make a significant difference in how cold you feel.

Cold weather puts an added strain on the heart. Unfamiliar exercise, such as shoveling snow or pushing a car can bring on a heart attack or make other medical conditions worse. Shoveling is very strenuous exercise and can quickly take a toll on your body. Ask someone to shovel for you if you are at high risk of a heart attack or other injury. Shoveling snow is a prime source of emergency room visits. Using improper posture and inadequate shovels can lead to serious back or other injury.

Cold weather means more clothes and more clothes means “more bulky”. Bulky is not cool. Thus, the trick is to limit your bulkiness while maximizing your warmth.

Hypothermia can set in pretty quickly. Have a dry towel, some fleece pants and top, gloves and socks. You really want to keep as many wits functioning as possible when you are out in the cold.

Cold water immersion – falling into a stream – increases heat loss twenty-fold. Wearing wet clothing is no better than standing naked in the cold. Wear appropriate clothing for the area and terrain that will be traveled. In winter, that means wearing more layers, with clothing made from wool, down, or synthetic materials.

Space heaters shouldn’t be near anything flammable- like couches, curtains, bedding, etc. Space heaters are frequently banned from offices, because they are blatant fire hazards and huge energy wasters. On the other hand, a heated keyboard, footrest or radiant panel uses a tiny fraction of the electricity, and is about as likely to start a fire as your mouse!

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