Is the Weather Making you Sick?
Test your knowledge of how the weather affects your health with this quiz.
You can have heatstroke if your body temperature hits:
- 102F (38.9C)
- 104F (40C)
- 106F (41.1C)
A: 104F (41.1C) – If you’ve overdone it in really hot weather, watch for signs like nausea, confusion, fast breathing or heart rate, and headache. If you notice any of them, you need medical help right away.
Several days of heat and this can make you cranky and more aggressive:
- cloudy skies
- high humidity
- constant rain
A: High humidity – Hot, sticky days can make it hard to sleep. And because you’re sweating, it’s not easy to keep enough water in your body. Plus, you may feel like you have no choice but to stay inside. The end result: When the air’s like a sauna, your temper may flare.
When someone has a really low body temperature (hypothermia), you should put them under a heat lamp to warm them up:
A: False – Direct heat can hurt their skin or cause their heart to beat irregularly. Don’t offer an electric blanket or heating pad, either. A few things that can help: take off any wet clothes, cover them with blankets, and give them something warm to drink. Skin-to-skin contact is good, too.
You shouldn’t exercise outside when it’s below:
- 10F (-12.2C)
- 20F (-6.7C)
- 32F (0C)
Even if you don’t have asthma, you might feel like you do if you try to work up a sweat in really cold weather. Frigid, dry air can make your airways smaller and cause something called exercise-induced asthma. You might cough, wheeze, feel a tightness in your chest, or find it hard to breathe.
These symptoms should go away when you take a break if they were caused by the cold. If they don’t, call 911.
People with arthritis may have more pain in their joints before rainy or cold weather, likely because of a change in:
- Air pressure
A: Air pressure – This force (also called barometric pressure) pushes against your body from the outside. When bad weather is on the way, the pressure drops and the tissues in your body can swell. This can cause you pain.
Migraines can be triggered by:
- Extreme heat or cold
- High humidity
- Stormy weather
- All of the above
A: All of the above – Not only can these things bring on migraines, but they also can make one you have worse. Other weather-related triggers include bright sunlight, dry air, and drops in barometric pressure.
Your allergies might bother you more on a:
- Cloudy day
- Hot day
- Rainy day
A: Hot day – There is a bright side to cloudy, rainy days: They can give you a break from your allergies. Pollen moves around when it’s warm, dry, and windy. This can make your watery eyes and sneezing worse.
It may help you lose weight to:
- Turn your thermostat up
- Turn your thermostat down
- Keep your thermostat at 75F (23.8C)
A: Turn your thermostat down – When it’s cold, we burn more calories to make heat. So if you’re trying to lose weight, that over-air conditioned office, store, or waiting room may not be such a bad thing.