How to Combat the Cold

It’s cold out. For many Fibro warriors, cold weather means pain, achiness and hibernation. Today I’m giving a few hints that might make winter a bit more tolerable.

Wear warm socks: I have a friend who is a doctor of Chinese medicine, and she has always nagged me to wear socks. It turns out there is a good reason for this. There are many important nerve endings in your feet. When you keep your feet warm, your entire body benefits. Here’s a cute collection.

Wear a hat, even in the house: Most of your body heat escapes through your head. If you tend to feel chilly, try wearing a hat. Remember sleeping caps? There was good science behind those things. Here’s a nice, soft one that comes in lots of colors.

Warm up your bed before you get in it: I learned this trick many decades ago while trekking in the Himalayas – I put a canteen of boiling water at the bottom of my sleeping bag. I was nice and warm during the night, and the water was nice and cold in the morning! Use an electric blanket or a hot water bottle to warm up your bed, especially around the feet.

Dry your hair: After a shower, dry your hair with a hair dryer. While you’re at it, allow the dryer to wave by your ears a few times. This will dry up any water that might be left in your ear canal, preventing earaches later on. This is also a good tip for children who are prone to winter earaches.

Use tonics: A tonic is a drink that is soothing to your body and soul. Ginger tea is an excellent winter tonic, as ginger has warming properties. Holding the warm mug is also soothing for achy hands.

Move – though I don’t mean ‘to Florida.’ I mean, I guess you can move to Florida if you want to, trading cold weather for hurricanes, but that’s not what I mean. I do mean, move your body. Muscles, tendons and joints that remain still for a period of time start to hurt. While I understand the temptation to stay under the covers until spring, it will not make you feel better. Get out once a day and walk briskly for 20 minutes. Do a 10-minute Yoga or Pilates flow. This keeps your body limber and your heart and lungs healthy. Good circulation to your hands and feet is essential, and can prevent achiness.

Get your thermals on: My favorite article of clothing is my silk long underwear. For those of us sensitive to fabrics, this is a miracle. Soft, warm and non-binding, silk feels wonderful and indulgent, and layers nicely under absolutely anything. Here’s one nice brand.

If you’re suffering, reach out for support. To all my warriors, I send you a warm hug!

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