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Does The Cold Give You A Cold?

Posted at 9:04 AM, Feb 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-06 10:04:22-05

Two things we know after a snow day like yesterday, kids love to play in the snow and mom's going to tell you to "Wear a coat, or you'll catch a cold!"

But what if mom's wrong?!

One doctor is setting the record straight.

"Cold weather doesn't give you a cold," says Dr. Dan McGee, M.D.

Doctor Dan McGee is calling out the old "Coats and Colds" wives tale.

Dr. McGee says, "We do see more colds in the winter months and that's because we're all inside, closed in and with the windows closed, doors closed, coughing and sneezing on each other. Also, during the cold weather, the air is drier and colder and that means your skin will crack, the lining of your nose will crack and that makes it more susceptible for viruses to enter."

Colds are caused by viruses.

Once you're sick, you get other people sick.

That's how colds are contracted, and layers and layers of clothing won't prevent that.

"Obviously, if you're outside too long without a coat on, you can risk suffering from hypothermia, but you probably won't get a cold. And not only that, you don't have to dry your hair before you go outside! That's not going to give you pneumonia," says Dr. McGee.

But there are still some concerns.

Dr. McGee says, "I think the best way to think about dressing for a cold winter day is to dress in as many clothes as you feel comfortable. Obviously if the wind is blowing and it`s cold outside you want to cover up and not have any bare exposed skin because although you won`t get a cold, you may run the risk of getting frostbite."

And one more thing, experts agree the weather is not directly responsible for making people sick, however, repeated exposure to cold and dry air can negatively impact the body's immune system.

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