Being very sensitive to cold is a situation that can happen to some people. We all know someone who is warmer than average since they are always cold. In general, these people are known as chilly or chilly.

Controlling body temperature is a very complex process involving the two major regulatory systems of the body: the nervous system and the hormonal system.

The key structure in this process is the hypothalamus, which, through the release of various neurotransmitters and hormones, will lead to changes that allow the temperature to be maintained within a very narrow range of values. For this reason, the hypothalamus is considered to be our body’s thermostat.

Sensitivity to cold can be a sign of a health problem

It is normal to be cold occasionally, this happens when the temperature changes, when we have not eaten well, in the event of some eventuality that reduces blood pressure in a self-limited way, such as when an episode of vomiting or diarrhea occurs, or when ingesting an alcoholic beverage.

Another situation in which you may feel very cold is when your body temperature is rising during the course of an infection, just before the fever appears. This is what is known as chills.

Sensitivity to cold becomes a warning sign when changes in the ambient temperature are not of sufficient magnitude to cause this sensation, or when someone who tolerated the cold well suddenly begins to be more sensitive to a lower temperature.

Top health conditions that can lead to constant cold

Changes in the pattern of a habit or sensation may be an indication that some change has occurred in the body. For this reason, someone who tolerated the cold well and begins to always feel very cold should inquire about the reasons that are leading him to have this feeling.

Thyroid gland disorders

The thyroid is a gland in charge of controlling metabolism processes. When the metabolism is accelerated by an increase in its function, hyperthyroidism occurs, a situation in which there is sweating and a sensation of heat.

In the event that this gland decreases its function, the opposite situation occurs, hypothyroidism, a state in which the person can always be very cold due to a slowing down of the metabolism.

Alterations in the blood flow of the skin

People who have lowered blood pressure levels tend to feel colder. This is because in these situations there is constriction of the blood vessels of the skin causing the local blood flow to decrease, thus interfering with one of the mechanisms that maintain body heat.

This phenomenon also occurs in diseases such as anemia, where there is a decrease in the number of red blood cells, which are the cells in charge of transporting oxygen to the tissues. This causes the blood to be diverted to the internal organs and especially to the brain and muscles, making the superficial tissues less irrigated and therefore have a slightly lower temperature.

Peripheral blood vessel conditions can cause coldness and discoloration with paleness and a bluish cast to the hands and feet. This is common in smokers, diabetics, and those who develop arteriosclerosis.

Medication use

Medications that have some type of action on the autonomic nervous system can lead to a change in the diameter of the blood vessels, this affects the flow of blood through the skin causing the sensation of cold.

This is common with some medications to treat high blood pressure, some types of chronic pain medication, treatments for urinary problems, and drugs used to treat emotional states such as depression.

Alterations in nutritional status

Food is key to guarantee the intake of nutrients in adequate amounts. When this does not happen, such as when doing low calorie diets, the body may not have the sufficient amount of carbohydrates it requires to fulfill the functions of metabolism.

The adipose tissue fulfills a lining function that helps to maintain body heat, people who have a great weight loss beyond the recommended values, as occurs in states of anorexia, may lose this insulating effect and become more sensitive to it. cold.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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