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Exposure to cold enhance chances of respiratory, other diseases: Experts

Post by M Peerzada on Wednesday, December 14, 2022

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Srinagar, Dec 13: Chances of developing respiratory and other diseases enhance due cold to cold conditions, doctors said Tuesday advising people to remain cautious during winters.
Dr Masood Rashid, Critical Care Expert J&K Health Department, said due to cold the chances of hypertension, diabetes, blood pressure, and respiratory infections like flues increase as there is less activity in winter months.
“Many patients suffer from lung diseases, COPD, asthma and all these diseases aggregate during cold either because of increase in rate of infection or cold,” he said.
Masood said there is a tendency of eating more during winter months and activities are less because of cold and these diseases indirectly cause further problems among patients. He said these incidents are more in winter compared to summer.
The Critical Care Expert said the chances of respiratory infections and acute exacerbation of chronic lung diseases are more in the winter season.
“People have to restrict their dietary habits in winter. People should eat a low salt and low-sugar diet during winter. Proper medication should be followed. Elderly and children should not walk out unnecessarily during morning and evening hours,” he said.
Dr Suhail Naik, Consultant Paediatrician, Children Hospital Bemina said cold increases chances of seasonal respiratory viruses like influenza and human parainfluenza viruses among the children and the patient flow has increased.
“The increase is not disproportionate and it is not alarming and not exponential. This is the favourable time for respiratory viruses and the dry spell is adding to it,” he said.
“There should be a proper vaccination schedule for the children. They should take rest and not get exposed to cold in the morning hours,” he said.
Over the past two months, cold has increased the patient flow in hospitals across the valley with patients complaining of sore throat, sneezing, stuffy nose, cough etc.
“Due to the decrease in temperature, the immune system becomes weak. The patients are prone to such infections and catch such symptoms swiftly,” said a doctor at CD hospital Srinagar.
He said that the dry spell can aggravate the condition of patients who are already suffering from respiratory ailments.
The common cold is the most widespread respiratory tract infection. Doctors generally make a distinction between upper respiratory tract infections which affect the nose, sinuses and throat and lower respiratory tract infections which affect the airways and lungs.
Doctors said the continuous dry smell and dip in temperature normally causes weakness to the immune system. They advised people to take precautionary measures to avoid falling prey to cold-related diseases, including flu and common cold.
Medical experts said the frequency of dry spells observed over Kashmir during the autumn season has shown a snowballing trend, particularly since the mid-nineties.
Dr Sheikh Mohd Saleem, Public Health Expert, said winter poses a number of safety concerns for people and recognizing and avoiding dangers is critical to healthy health.
“Take proper care of your skin. In winter, cracked and dry skin can be aggravating. Drinking plenty of water and using a moisturizer can help you. These moisturizing creams and cold creams should be used on a daily basis to achieve the best benefits,” he said.
Talking about consistent physical activity, he said in winter, people become inactive and it is difficult to keep to workout routines but there are different methods to stay active and warm.
“Protein is a necessary nutrient for good health. Protein-rich foods might help you feel more energized. Proteins aid information of tissues, bones and stimulation of the body's metabolism. Having lots of meat, poultry food, dairy products, nuts, and seeds on hand may feed you with proteins while also keeping you warm during the winter,” Saleem said.
“Omega-3 fatty acids are found in a variety of foods, most notably fish and plants. These healthy fats help with eye health, skin health, and act as an anti-inflammatory. It alleviates joint pain and stiffness in the winter,” he said.
Saleem suggested people to consume more fiber as soluble fibers are found in fruits, cereals, vegetables, nuts, and seeds and can help with digestive issues, especially in winter.
“It aids the reduction of cholesterol levels, which helps to avoid obesity. These dietary fibers are helpful for boosting immunity and reducing inflammation,” he said.

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