Cooler temps can make it harder to breathe

Cooler temps can make it harder to breathe

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Cooler weather can make it harder to breathe when there's not a lot of moisture in the air.

That's because our nasal passages are designed to warm and humidify air before it gets to the lungs. In cooler, dryer air, the nose overcompensates and may start to run when that extra mucus is produced. Colder air also can't hold as much moisture as warm air, which can dehydrate the body, triggering mild headaches.

Here's what you can do to breathe easier this fall and winter:

  • Clear your head: step into a quick, hot shower, the steam can loosen up congestion
  • Keep those air filters fresh in your home
  • Switch on a humidifier: that can help make a dry nose and throat more bearable by filling the air you breathe with moisture
  • Use saline spray for those dry nostrils
  • Hydrate at night by drinking water
  • Prop yourself up when sleeping: this will keep your nose elevated so gravity can do the decongesting work, while you sleep
     
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