ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Uncover Why Turmeric Helps You Heal
Needling Away Your Headaches With Acupuncture
Wristbands May Lessen Nausea After Radiation
ANIMAL CARE
Beware of Dog Bites
Safe Toys for Dogs
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
BONES & JOINTS
Occupational Therapy Plus Exercise Benefits Osteoarthritis
Gene Plays Key Role in Clubfoot
Rheumatoid Arthritis a Threat to the Heart
CANCER
Gene Screen May Predict Colon Cancer's Return
Supplements Might Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
Seaweed May Help Treat Lymphoma
CAREGIVING
Omega-3 Fatty Acid May Help 'Preemie' Girls' Brains
With Alzheimer's, Health-Care Costs Could Triple
Are Hospital Mobile Phones Dialing Up Superbugs?
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Exercise May Blunt Salt's Effect on Hypertension
Health Tip: Are You Anemic?
Smog Tougher on the Obese
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
DENTAL, ORAL
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
DIABETES
Diabetes Linked to Cognitive Problems
Findings Challenge Tight Glucose Control for Critically Ill Patients
Insulin Resistance Tied to Peripheral Artery Disease
DIET, NUTRITION
Blueberry Drink Protects Mice From Obesity, Diabetes
Uncover Why Turmeric Helps You Heal
Eating Nuts May Help Cholesterol Levels
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Showerheads Harbor a Bounty of Germs
Green Areas Lower Health Inequities Between Rich, Poor
Lead Exposure in Childhood Linked to Criminal Behavior Later
EYE CARE, VISION
Brain Pressure More Likely to Cause Vision Loss in Men
Antioxidant-Rich Diet May Protect Against Eye Disease
Impotence Drugs Don't Harm Vision: Study
FITNESS
School Phys. Ed. Injuries Up 150 Percent
Simple Exercise Precautions To Help Keep Baby Boomers Fit
Exercise in Adolescence May Cut Risk of Deadly Brain Tumor
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
GENERAL HEALTH
Trans-Fat Ban In New York City Is Proving successful
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Spot light on Dani Antman New Lionheart teacher
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
Research Shows Genetic Activity of Antioxidants
Ginkgo Won't Prevent Heart Attack, Stroke in Elderly
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
The HPV Vaccine: Preventative Medicine or Human Sacrifice?
Hand Washing 10 Times a Day May Help Keep Flu Away
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Keep Safety in Mind While Your Kids Are Cooling Off in the Water
Protect Your Kids From Swine Flu While at Camp
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
MEN'S HEALTH
Soy Linked to Low Sperm Count
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Optimism May Boost Immune System
Psychotherapy Can Boost Happiness More Than Money
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
PAIN
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Woman in America Are Delaying Motherhood, Study Says
SENIORS
Boost In Elderly Population Will Be Felt Worldwide
Martial Arts Training May Save Seniors' Hips
The Juice From Beetroots May Boost Stamina
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Exercise, Weight Control May Keep Fibromyalgia at Bay
Supplements Might Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
Air Pollution Slows Women's Marathon Times
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With Age Comes Greater Risk of Hypothermia

SATURDAY, Jan. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Older people often focus their wintertime worries on fears of slipping on the ice, but they ought to be equally concerned about the risks of being too cold, advises the U.S. National Institute on Aging.

The ability to endure lengthy exposure to the cold lessens as people age, putting the elderly at a greater risk for hypothermia -- the condition in which body temperature falls below normal and stays there for a prolonged period of time.

Certain medical conditions, medicines and a sedentary lifestyle can make older people extra vulnerable even to mild cold snaps.

But there are steps older adults can take to prevent hypothermia, including:

* Dress in several layers of loose clothing when going out. Wear a hat, scarf, gloves or mittens, along with a warm coat.
* Wear long underwear under your clothes, along with socks and slippers, when inside. Use a blanket or afghan to keep legs and shoulders warm. Wear a hat or cap indoors if necessary.
* Set the thermostat to at least 68 degrees. Home temperatures from 60 to 65 degrees can trigger hypothermia in older people.
* Check with your doctor to see if any of your medications -- whether prescription or over-the-counter -- might increase your risk for hypothermia.

People with hypothermia tend to act confused, slow or sleepy, have slowed or slurred speech and might shiver or have stiffness in the limbs. If you suspect someone has hypothermia, take the person's temperature, and if it is 96 degrees or lower, call 911.

Cold temperatures resulted in more than 6,000 hospitalizations and 827 deaths in 2006, according to the latest figures the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The group's analysis of 6,182 cold weather-related hospitalizations found that:

* Men accounted for about 40 percent more hospitalizations for exposure to cold than women.
* People 65 and older were hospitalized for cold-related incidents almost 7 times more than people age 18 to 44 and 3 times more than those 45 to 64.
* Hypothermia (which can cause loss of physical and mental abilities and, in extreme cases, death), frostbite, respiratory failure, and pneumonia were the most common reasons for cold weather-related hospitalizations.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about hypothermia.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCES: U.S. National Institute on Aging, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, news releases, January 2009

Last Updated: Jan. 31, 2009

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