Will sleeping in a cold room or taking cold showers, increase resistance to colds?

It has long been believed that the common cold is caused by cold temperatures - cold weather conditions, exposure to cold water, rain, and so on. As a result, many people believe habituation to cold temperatures can help a person develop resistance against the common cold. By this logic, sleeping in a cold room and taking cold showers is good for you because this habit will protect you against colds. However, this seems to be a popular belief that has no substantiation. Studies have found no connection between the common cold and cold temperatures, or between habituation to cold temperatures and resistance to the common cold. It is a well known and well established fact that people tend to get colds more frequently during the winter, but this does not necessarily mean that winter itself is responsible. The common cold is caused by a virus, and not by external temperature changes. The link between winter and common colds may be because of related factors that encourage the spread of the virus. For example, during cold weather, people tend to spend more time indoors with each other, making it easier to spread the virus to each other.

It is of course possible that developing an ability to handle cold temperatures would make you less susceptible to the factors that come into play in cold weather. However, this is unlikely to have a major impact, and it is not advisable to subject your body to harsh conditions for the sake of such a doubtful benefit. There are other things you can do to reduce the chances of developing a cold and it would be more effective to undertake these precautions.

The common cold virus usually spreads through human contact - regular washing of the hands is therefore one of the best ways to reduce transmission. Here too, it may be that during winter, people feel less of a need to wash their hands frequently, since they get less 'dirty'. However, no matter how clean your hands seem to be, they may have picked up viruses, and washing will certainly help. It also helps to avoid touching your face too much, particularly your nose, mouth and eyes. Other risk factors include a lack of sleep, regular smoking, and nutritional deficiencies, specifically vitamin D deficiency. You should therefore also ensure that you get at least 8 hours of sleep a night, eat a healthy, balanced diet, and avoid smoking.

answered by G M

Sleeping in a cold room has no evidence of increasing your resistance to colds. In fact it may make your problem worse. And if the room is very cold and very dry then it may cause some serious complications as it would dry out the mucous membranes in your nose and will cause a very dry throat too so you would probably wake up with a sore throat, cold or a bad headache. If you like sleeping in a cold room then make sure you have a humidifier to balance the moisture in the room.

Taking cold showers is thought to help blood circulation, stimulate the glandular system, prevent premature ageing, and build resistance against cold and infections. A cold water shower increases the oxygen intake of our body and thus our blood and cells receive more oxygen that contributes to a healthy immune system. Cold water shower also helps to bring the blood to your capillaries thus it increases circulation throughout your body and cleanses the circulatory system. This helps to flush the internal organs and provide new supply of blood and oxygen. It reduces blood pressure and helps to strengthen the mucous membranes that help to resist colds, coughs and other infections. It also helps to eliminate the toxic waste in the body by contracting the muscles. It also increases your energy levels and improves the growth of hair and nails. Cold water is recommended for healthy hair as it gently cleanses and helps to maintain the shine. It improves hair growth since it boosts blood circulation in the scalp. It closes the cuticles of your hair, which makes the hair stronger by preventing dirt from entering it.

If you live in a very cold place then what you can do is try switching between hot and cold showers. Start with hot water and then switch to cold water. Hot water gets the blood rushing to your skin and cold water makes it go rushing back to your organs. This switching between hot and cold temperatures forces the blood to circulate rapidly and improves blood circulation. This helps to prevent varicose veins, hardened arteries, hypertension, etc. and also helps to improve your skin tone and gives you a healthy pink glow. Cold water also helps to close the pores so dirt and other impurities cannot enter it and thus helps in preventing acne and other skin infections. Besides it totally wakes you up and energizes your mind and body leaving you refreshed and invigorated.

answered by G R

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