Preparing your Mind and Body for the Winter Months

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Winter is well on the way now – the signs of autumn are everywhere with hedgerows full of berries and trees that have beautiful displays of leaves in their autumn colours. With winter on the way, thoughts turn to making sure that our homes are in good order, ready for the months ahead – clearing leaves from the gutter and if necessary calling someone like this emergency plumber Gloucester to make repairs to broken boilers to keep the home warm and cosy in the winter.

But as well as making sure that we have all of the things ready in our home for the colder months, it is also important at this time of the year to make sure that our bodies and minds are well nourished, as this can be a tough time for them too!

Keeping the immune system well is particularly important during the winter, this year more than ever. With the past eighteen months of lockdowns due to the spread of the novel coronavirus, this winter scientists are predicting many of the other winter bugs to make a huge comeback! Taking vitamin supplements, in particular vitamin D which we have at much lower levels in the winter due to the lack of sunlight is important. It is also important to eat healthily, including plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables in our diets to help fight off the winter illnesses.

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Something that many people suffer from in the winter is an illness known as seasonal affective disorder or SAD. This is a type of depression that is at its worst during the winter months and is caused by the lower light levels at this time of the year. There are things that you can do to combat this, however. Light boxes are a popular treatment for people who suffer from SAD, and they are used to expose the body to more light. It is also impossible to increase your exercise as this can help to combat the feelings that come with SAD – outdoor exercise is best as this will also give you more exposure to daylight.

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Something else that can cause problems in the winter months are chilblains. When the skin gets cold and you try to warm it up too quickly, this can lead to swellings on the skin that are itchy and red – these are known as chilblains. There are things that you can do to help to prevent them, such as trying to keep the whole of your body warm all the time. Wear thicker socks and gloves as they more often than not affect the extremities and when you come in from the cold don’t be tempted to instantly plunge your feet or hands into hot water!

If you do have chilblains some of the things that can help to treat them are witch hazel and calamine lotion, so make sure that you have these things to hand ready for the winter.

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