Q: Will going outside with wet hair result in
a cold, or is my mother just plain crackers?
A: It’s no longer our place
to judge your mom’s mental status, but we sure hope the old bat doesn’t
practice medicine. “The combination of a wet head and chilly outdoor
temperature might make you shiver, but it won’t increase your chance of
catching a cold,” explains A. Mark Fendrick, M.D., professor of internal
medicine at the University of Michigan. But your mom isn’t the only
person to fall for this whopper: Thirty-seven percent of adults think
blow-drying their hair before leaving the house somehow increases their
immunity, according to a recent study. And in case you’re wondering,
weather changes don’t cause colds, not wearing enough clothes outside in
bad weather doesn’t cause colds, and the cold fairy does not
leave “cold pixie germs” under your pillow. Duh.
Once and for all, the only way to pick up a cold is by making direct
contact with a cold virus. Hundreds of ’em lurk out there, especially
during cooler months when the crappy weather keeps you indoors and in
closer contact with that phlegmy cube mate who insists on high-fiving
you about last night’s game. Paw your eyes, nose, or mouth after
touching an infected person or surface and congratulations—you’ve just
introduced millions of viral particles into your system. Best advice?
Skip antibiotics, which don’t do anything to kill the cold but could
make you more immune to medicines you might need in the future.
you can do is to treat your symptoms—Cepacol for a sore throat,
decongestants for the snot factor, Nyquil for fun, and Risperdal to stop
the loud voices in your head.
So wash your hands, stay hydrated, and
keep the hell away from us.