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21 'Habits' of People Who Are Sensitive to Cold Temperatures

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While feeling chilled to the bone in freezing temperatures tends not to be an enjoyable experience for most, some people may have a sensitivity to the cold that can make even the slightest cool breeze completely intolerable.

Being hypersensitive to cold temperatures can occur if you have issues with your metabolism, or a small amount of body fat  – but it can also be a side effect of chronic health issues. Cold sensitivity has been associated with conditions such as anemia, hypothyroidism, lupus, fibromyalgia, dysautonomia, ME/CFS, diabetes and vascular problems (such as Raynaud’s phenomenon). (If you experience an abnormal sensitivity to cold but are unsure of the cause, be sure to talk with your doctor!)

Most folks might bundle up in a warm coat during winter, or grab another blanket for their bed if they get cold, but those with cold sensitivity may often take additional measures to ensure they stay warm, keep their blood flowing and minimize pain and stiffness. The “reason” behind a person’s behavior or coping strategies may not always be obvious, though –  so we asked our Mighty community to share a “habit” they’ve developed because of their sensitivity to cold temperatures. Let us know what you would add in the comments below!

Here’s what our community shared with us:

  1. Gloves. Gloves in the house. Gloves in my purse. Gloves in the car. Gloves in the wheelchair pouch. Gloves in the walker. Extra extra gloves. Light gloves. Heavy gloves. Fancy gloves. Do I have enough gloves? I should probably buy another pair of gloves.” – Danielle B.
  2. I tend to try and walk less or walk the shortest distance, layer up as well. I usually walk really slow because it’s so painful and people have a go at me for walking slow.” – Amber D.
  3. I sit with my legs crossed and my hands between my legs. It looks awkward but my extremities are always cold and if I want to be able to use my hands I have to be creative about keeping them warm.” – Anna D.
  4. I stay inside if I can. I have been stocking up on stuff early before weather gets too bad.” – Candace W.
  5. I always dress in layers to accommodate my changing temperature regulation needs, and it helps a ton!” – Ashley E.L.
  6. I have trigeminal neuralgia (among other things), so I always make sure to have a scarf to cover my face. TN is triggered by even a slight breeze on the face, so it’s really important to keep my face covered when I’m outside.” – Jessica H.
  7. I bring a sweater everywhere in the summer because A/C in buildings and public transportation is usually cranked up.” – Jennifer B.
  8. When it’s cold I just stop talking. My joints lock up and it feels really hard to move and hold a conversation. Not to mention if the air is cold enough it hurts to breathe because my lungs are damaged.” – Jillian S.
  9. I keep a blanket at work. I will also sleep with two blankets and wear fleece pajamas and socks. My other habit is to try to wear things with pockets so that I can shove my hands in them if my Raynaud’s starts getting really bad.” – Courtney D.
  10. Sometimes I don’t even have to go to the bathroom but when I’m out and about and am struggling to [get] warm I will go in one just to run my hands under warm water.” – Elizabeth B.
  11. I have a heating pad in every room of my house, anywhere I can sit or lay down… that way, I don’t have to go hunting one down!” – Merri E.S.
  12. When I’m freezing and in bed, I’ll put my feet in between my husband’s calves. He sleeps on his side and always asleep before me… so he never knows.” – Megan B.
  13. Keeping hand warmers with me in my purse at all times! I put them in my pockets, gloves and shoes or sometimes just hold them in my hands.” – Abby B.
  14. Tensing my body in the cold. I don’t realize how much damage I’m doing until I’m done shivering and tensing and all muscles hurt or neck or back is in agony.” – Ashley E.L.
  15. Always having warm and soft blankets and socks around. I also wear a lot of layers and cozy boots.” – Elizabeth M.
  16. I use showers and baths to warm up, if I get super cold that’s the only way I can warm back up. Sometimes two to three super hot showers a day.” – Alexandra E.
  17. Layers… I always wear layers and make sure I have a jacket handy even in the Georgia summers. My fingerless gloves also go everywhere with me. They have been really helpful when my fingers are freezing.” – Melissa A.B.
  18. I’m the one that always has to lug around a jumper/coat, even for a trip out in glorious sunshine in the height of summer! You never know when a slight breeze could start up and change your lovely feeling of warmth from the sun to feeling like you’ve ventured out on an Antarctic expedition! I’ve also been known to wear a jumper on the beach in the middle of summer – those sea breezes that everyone prays for on a roasting hot day can feel like the Beast from The East to me.” – Arlette W.
  19. Carrying extra socks in my purse, car, desk and all over the house because my feet are always ice cubes.” – ShayLee A.W.
  20. Heated seats are on in my car all the time, even in summer. I use it like a heating pad to help relax my muscles. The car also has a heated steering wheel which is super helpful, even with gloves on!” – Jennifer G.
  21. *Uploads 365 pictures of me wearing my robe in the house.*” – Aimée R. 

Struggling with cold sensitivity? Check out the following tips and recommendations from our Mighty community:

8 Tips for Keeping Warm This Winter When You’re Sensitive to Cold

20 Heating Products That Can Help Relieve Pain

16 Cold Weather Essentials for Those Who Switch From Cold to Hot

12 Products People With Raynaud’s Syndrome Swear By

Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash

Originally published: December 7, 2018
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