[Image: Self Care for Cold Weather]

So Apologies on the image, there were none that looked cold weathery without being christmasy? 

Self Care for Cold Weather.

-Wash, wash, wash your hands, lots and lots each day.

No seriously. Hand sanitizer is not a replacement for washing your hands, but it or baby wipes is better than nothing. Do so before and after you eat. After you go to the restroom, any time you are around folks with the sniffles. And just, lots. I used to work in a kid’s museum and we had this lotion that we’d rub on your hands and then put them under a black light- lemme tell you something, I used to take delight in the looks of horror on parent’s faces. Now it just kind of terrifies me too.

There’s a lot of germs and a lot of folks huddling inside and you don’t want to be sick.

-Cover up.

Scarfs, hats, mittens, gloves, hoodies. All my lovely folks who suffer from dissociation- take it from a friend- just because you don’t feel cold doesn’t mean your body isn’t taking a hit. Don’t go out in the snow in short sleeves, please.

-Lotion is your friend.

Our skin takes a huge hit during the cold season, be nice to your skin. Put lotion on in the morning and at night and maybe even through out the day.  Your skin will thank you, you won’t get as chapped/burned. Oil based (vs. water based) moisturizers are even better.

One thing you can do for your feet/hands is apply lotion and then put socks/mittens on and sleep like that.

-Check your lip balms for drying agents

Lotion is your friend- and so is lip balm. However a lot of lip balms contain drying agents whether it be menthol, eucalyptus or Salicylic acid. This will only have you reapplying soon after without really helping you out in the long run.

-Take Wet Things off Immediately

If you aren’t going  to be able to strip completely- this is why layers can be your friend (when say.. going to class or work). But staying in wet clothes a. doesn’t help you warm up and b. irritates the skin.

-If you’re so cold you’re shaking, stop layering up.

If you’re so cold that you’re shaking- your body has most likely dipped to the point that it isn’t creating it’s own heat anymore. layering only helps to keep heat in- not make it. You’ll need to do something to raise your body temp, whether it be an electric blanket, skin to skin contact with someone else, or a long warm(not hot!) shower. 

-Get the Nutrients You Can

Whether you do it by drinking (not chugging- don’t be that college student) orange juice, eating your fruits and veggies, or by taking vitamins- now is a time where you should probs be paying more attention to your vitamin intake. Help boost your immune system early and often through out the season. Now is a good time to be loading up on vegetable soups and the like.

-Know your OTCs and keep them stocked if you use them

This is a pretty good page that talks about the difference between advil, aspirin, and tylenol. All work okay for fevers- but tylenol for instance won’t help with anti-inflammatory needs. 

Whatever your typical go to- keep it in stock. There’s nothing that sucks more than having to go out with a head cold just to grab same dayquil or alka seltzer. 

-Pay Attention to your Emotions.

Seasonal Affective Disorder is a very real thing. And if this is a thing you think you might suffer from, it might be time to talk to your doctor. There are special lights that you can purchase for your home (though they are on the expensive side) that can be used to help.

And even for those of us without SAD, sometimes the winter weather can get us down. Make sure you’re taking time to still participate in self care- and not only self soothing, but processing and dealing with our feelings.

Take Care of yourselves, okay?