From otitis media to allergies: what threatens fans to walk without a hat

Health Tips

Don’t be afraid of meningitis

For example, if you ask the average passer-by what walking without a hat in winter can turn into, most will immediately give out: “meningitis!” Despite the fact that it has been said more than once: there is no evidence of a direct connection, because meningitis is an infectious disease. Inflammation of the lining of the brain that develops as a result of a bacterial, viral or fungal infection. The latter is transmitted by airborne droplets. A carrier of meningococcus may not even realize that the infection lives in the mucous membrane of his nasopharynx – the pathology is activated when immunity is seriously reduced. Moreover, any infections are more actively transmitted not in the cold, but in a warm, cramped room. An effective method of preventing meningitis is vaccination, but not wearing a warm hat.

Nevertheless, the love of walking bareheaded in winter is fraught with hypothermia. Against this background, immunity decreases, which means that the likelihood of “catching” any viruses increases.

“For years I went without a hat in the winter: you style your hair in the morning, and a hat on top? It seemed unthinkable to me in my youth. Unfortunately, the bad habit turned into sinusitis. It has become chronic, it activates regularly, even in summer, if you allow hypothermia, ”one of the wearers writes, warning everyone else to wear a hat in winter.

What is the danger of hypothermia?

In the cold, through an uncovered head, a person loses a third of the heat. Hypothermia can turn into at least unpleasant sensations. Many remember the characteristic headache that occurs at sub-zero temperatures if you are outside without a hat. The ears are also affected. The latter are not protected by fatty tissue (only cartilage and skin) and therefore can easily undergo frostbite. If you have chronic otitis, sinusitis, laryngitis and other diseases of the nasopharynx and ear cavity, you need to avoid hypothermia. Otitis also does not occur solely from hypothermia – it is an infectious disease, but with a decrease in the body’s defenses, you are automatically at risk.

If you feel a shooting pain behind your ears, try to get to a warm room as soon as possible. If the skin is red, but without blisters, the situation can still be salvaged at home. It is important to act correctly so as not to aggravate the situation. It is forbidden:

  • applying hot compresses to an ear that has lost sensitivity is fraught with a burn;

  • aggressive rubbing can increase pain and injure the skin;

  • alcohol is excluded;

  • You also do not need to apply cold, so as not to aggravate the situation even more.

    At home, you can use Panthenol in the form of foam. It is best to keep warm with a hat, scarf, down scarf or simply a warm blanket. The body is able to recover itself if the situation allows it. There are four stages of frostbite in total. We are talking about the first, the signs of which are a decrease in sensitivity for a while. When warmed, itching, burning and redness appear. These symptoms go away on their own after a few days. If we are talking about the second stage, when characteristic blisters appear on the skin, you need to see a doctor.

How does our hair react to cold?

A common stereotype says that those who like to walk without a hat in winter may experience baldness. In fact, this is not so, the hair will not begin to fall out in bunches, but the sub-zero temperature does not really affect them in the best way. Due to the narrowing of the peripheral vessels, the blood supply and nutrition of the hair follicles are disturbed. Because of this, the hair becomes dull and brittle, break faster. So protection in the form of a headdress is really necessary for our hair. But there is another extreme: people who regularly wear a warm hat may experience dandruff – the scalp becomes too dry, and a greenhouse effect occurs under a hat made of synthetic materials (for example, 100% acrylic). As a result – white flakes on clothes and characteristic itching.

This problem is solved in a complex way: firstly, you need to take care of humidifying the air at home. In winter, in our latitudes, with rather aggressive house heating, a humidifier is very necessary. There are very budget models – it is important that the device is conveniently filled with water, otherwise you will not use it (from personal experience).

The second point is to choose a suitable hat. Both synthetic material and 100% wool are not suitable – the latter is prickly. Cashmere is a great option, but not a budget one. Might be worth looking into wool blend options. And not necessarily a hat, it can be an elegant scarf, a hood, and some recognize only the hood of a down jacket or fur coat.

Remember that hats that are too tight can impede blood flow to the scalp, which means that the hat must be appropriate in size.

Side effects: headache and conjunctivitis

Another common story, if we talk about those who like to walk without a hat, is a headache from the cold. There is such a condition as ice-cream headache – a headache due to cold stimuli (ice cream in the name is not accidental – such a side effect is also often observed after it). A condition in which the center of the forehead hurts. The right treatment in such circumstances is to get warm as soon as possible. Things get more complicated if you suffer from a migraine. The cold can provoke an attack, which means it’s definitely better not to go outside without a hat in cold weather.

Finally, from hypothermia, conjunctivitis is not uncommon as a complication of a cold of the head. Moreover, such a pathology is distinguished among the most common. Typical symptoms: redness of the eyes, itching, sometimes inflammation of the cornea. These signs are not caused by allergens, but by the action of frosty air and wind. That is, on the one hand, there is no specific, “tangible” irritant, and on the other hand, there is an allergic reaction of the organs of vision. Some experts believe that the peculiarities of the immune response of this patient may be to blame. In any case, the best preventive measure is to wear a hat and scarf in winter. It is easier to prevent hypothermia than to eliminate then the adverse effects.


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