Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Can You Catch a Cold from Being Cold?

Now that winter is officially upon us in the Northern Hemisphere (started December 21 at 11:48 PM EST), let me ask the question of what causes one to catch the common cold?  There's the myth that going outside in the cold when wet or not properly dressed increases your risk of catching the cold.  Actually, this isn't true.  You can't catch a cold from getting cold.  Having said that, don't run outside in your underwear when it's 10 below out!  You can still get frostbite from exposure to cold temperatures.  You just can't catch the cold from the cold.

So how do you catch the cold if it's not from exposure to cold temperatures?  You catch a cold from a virus that causes a common cold.  It could be someone nearby you sneezing or kissing someone who has a cold causing virus.  That's it!  Nothing to do with cold temperatures.  You can, however, increase the symptoms you experience from a cold you already have by exposing yourself to cold temperatures.  That's different from catching the cold though.

For more information on the common cold, check out the great resource on WedMD below.

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