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DRS Issue Cold Weather Protection Recommendations

With temperatures expected to drop to -1/-2 in Pico do Arriero in the early hours of tomorrow morning, and a general cooling of temperatures the Regional Health Directorate (DRS), has issued a cold weather protection recommendation.

DRS recommendations:

A drop in temperatures, typical of the winter season, poses a threat to health and greatly affects people living in situations of greater physical, social or economic vulnerability. During the coldest season of the year, the incidence of respiratory infections increases, affecting people of all ages. Examples are influenza, COVID-19, and other diseases caused by respiratory viruses.

Virus transmission is more pronounced due to lower aeration of homes and workplaces and the concentration of people indoors.

In this sense, homes and other enclosed places should be kept warm, but clean and airy.

People, when necessarily exposed to cold and wind, should use adequate protection. In this context, it is recommended to:

– Use several pieces of cotton or wool clothing overlapping, instead of a single jacket;

– Wear gloves, cap, socks, and scarf (to keep the most exposed areas and ends protected/warm);

– Wear footwear that protects from water and cold;

– Use a moisturising cream for the skin and lips;

– Keep moving whenever possible.

During cold weather, our body cools down and expends more energy to stay warm. With food being an important role in providing the energy needed to meet this requirement, hot/warm food is recommended such as soups and broths, hot or heated drinks (tea or milk), and cooked vegetables.

However, despite its feel good/warm factor, the consumption of alcohol provides a false feeling of warmth. Alcoholic beverages cause vasodilation and heat quickly rushes to the skin and extremities.  Unfortunately, this effect only lasts for a short time leaving the body more vulnerable and easily chilled. ”

Samantha Gannon

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