[Image description: Two women are wearing masks as they walk in the city streets.]
The shorter (and darker) days of the year can sometimes feel tough to manage. In many areas of the country, winter also brings colder temperatures — with or without snow.
While it can be nice to stay cozy indoors with a blanket and a book, there are benefits of going outside year-round. Fresh air, a chance to get vitamin D and exposure to natural light, which can help set your circadian rhythm, can give you a boost during these colder days.
This could also be a good time to grab your boots and go for a walk since COVID-19 spreads less easily outside. You can also visit with friends and family outside (at a safe distance, of course) — just layer up, grab a warm beverage and enjoy time socializing!
Cold–weather wellness tips to keep in mind
Layer your clothes. Try to wear light, warm clothing under a wind-resistant jacket to stay comfortable. Remember, you can always take a layer off if you need to! It’s also a good idea to dress for the temperature and check for any upcoming bad weather before leaving home.
Drink enough water. Time to hydrate! In the summer, it’s often easier to notice when you’re thirsty because of the heat. However, your body still needs plenty of water in winter. Take note of how much you’re drinking and pack a water bottle (along with a hat and gloves, if needed) for your outdoor activities. If you’re tired of plain water, add in a lemon or lime wedge or try herbal tea.
Check in on your sleep. Did you know that getting enough sleep can help keep your immune system strong? If you’re struggling to fall asleep, consider sticking to a routine (even on weekends) and limiting screen time before bed. Staying active can also help improve your sleep quality and comes with many other benefits such as maintaining or losing weight, reducing anxiety and lowering blood pressure.
Notice your moods. Practicing mindfulness is one way to help boost your emotional well-being (click here for tips!). While it’s natural to sometimes experience the winter blues, if you notice consistent feelings of depression alongside other symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), it may be time to reach out to a therapist for help.
Take care of your skin. Your hands may be feeling dry after all the frequent handwashing! To prevent skin irritation, apply a moisturizing hand lotion after washing your hands or using hand sanitizer. If you’re dealing with acne or “mask-ne” from wearing your face mask, it’s a good idea to keep up with your skin routine. Need a little extra support? You can try non-comedogenic (doesn’t block pores) or hypoallergic (unlikely to cause an allergic response) products.
And remember, doctors on LiveHealth Online are here to help you! Whether you need care for acne, COVID-19 or a rash — you can have a visit from home anytime.