Introduction – Use Air Conditioning When You Have a Cold?
When you’re feeling under the weather, the last thing on your mind is probably how to keep your home as comfortable as possible. You just want to feel better and fast! In general, keeping the thermostat set to around 68 degrees Fahrenheit will help keep those icky germs at bay and make you feel more comfortable.
But if you’re not well enough to go without an extra blanket or a hot water bottle, then what are your options? Unfortunately, there are probably not many ways to use air conditioning that won’t make your cold symptoms worse. While running an AC will definitely cool you off (maybe even too much), it also dries out the air and leads to dehydration.
It might sound counterintuitive, but when you have cold, humid environments are actually preferable. Humid air feels warmer than dry air because it retains heat better. Thus, a humidifier could be just the thing you need to feel comfy and get some rest.
Is It Ok to Use Air Conditioning When You Have a Cold?
First and foremost, it depends on the severity of your symptoms. If you’re feeling warm and are just hoping to cool down, it’s nothing to worry about. But if you have a runny nose, congestion, or a fever, you should resist the urge to crank up the thermostat! In fact, you should probably turn it off completely. The dry air could make your nasal passages even drier.
Not only does this make it more difficult to breathe, but it can also lead to irritability, mouth dryness, and difficulty swallowing. For the same reasons, you should avoid using humidifiers when you have a cold. And if you do decide to go against our advice, remember to clean it regularly to prevent the spread of germs.
The Dangers of Using Air Conditioning When You Have a Cold
As we’ve mentioned above, using the AC will dry out your mucous membranes and make it harder to breathe. But there are other issues that make it a bad choice for those with colds. First, you’ll probably set the temperature too low if your symptoms make it hard for you to think clearly.
That can lead to shivers, and chills that make your nose run more and make your fever worse. Second, the sound from your AC unit could also be disruptive and keep you from getting the rest you need. Third, your AC could break down from the strain of running in high temperatures.
Humidifiers Are Good for People With Colds
Humidifiers do exactly what the name suggests: they increase the humidity in the air. This is great for people who come down with a cold because their nasal membranes are already dry and irritated. Although a humidifier won’t heal your cold, it could make you feel better.
Plus, it could help you avoid other complications caused by dry air. Humidifiers also help your sinuses stay moist, which can prevent you from getting sick in the first place. Even if you get a cold, continuous use of a humidifier can help you feel better faster.
Although it may be tempting to crank up the AC when you’re not feeling well, it’s best to just keep things at a comfortable temperature. You can do this with a warm, gentle fan setting or a single light blanket. You can also try to alter your sleeping habits so that you can get more comfortable at night.
This might mean going to bed earlier, drinking hot tea before bed, or taking some herbal supplements to help you sleep more soundly. If you follow these tips, you should be able to feel a bit more comfortable and rest better during your cold.