Four fall health challenges and how to deal with them

Why do our noses sometimes bleed when the weather outside is dry?

A woman blowing her nose into a tissue, possibly after sneeze or while sick (photo credit: INGIMAGE)
A woman blowing her nose into a tissue, possibly after sneeze or while sick
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)

Does your nose start to bleed every morning? Do you see clumps of hair on the floor and feel that at any moment your skin will crack from dryness? Why do these annoying things happen during the short time period between the broiling hot summer and the cold winter? Are there any solutions to these problems? A doctor explains.

Is everyone around you dripping? Suffering from nosebleeds? Itchy and dry skin? Even our hair doesn't work the way we want.

In many places, the air is drier than usual in relation to the humidity levels we’re used to in Israel. The environment in which we live and the weather greatly affects how our body operates. Usually the body adjusts and adapts to different climatic conditions, but what happens when the situation is a little more extreme than usual, like the dust storm last week?

We’ve listed the common physical problems that may occur from drought, hoping that the decisions recently made at the climate conference will succeed in preventing this weather from becoming a permanent matter that we’ll have to learn to live with.

Nose bleeds: Many people are surprised to see blood on a tissue after blowing their nose in the fall. 

"The most common cause of nosebleeds, whose medical term is epistaxis, is dry air," explained Dr. Liora Berzeg-Peru. "The delicate inner membrane that coats the nasal tissue from the inside dries out, becomes brittle and cracked, and with each touch of the nasal cavity, bleeding will begin more readily than in a normal condition, more than usual.”

Dry skin: Lots of people are now complaining about dry skin, chapped lips and itchy eyes. 

All of these problems are caused by exposure to dry air. 

"Because there is an accelerated evaporation of fluids, the body is in a constant state of dehydration," said Berzeg-Peru. 

Yet, she's reassuring. Aside from the fluids evaporating directly from the skin, the body’s largest organ, the body knows how to direct the remaining fluids to the most vital organs besides your skin. So you may use lots of body lotion and lip balm for dry lips over the next few weeks, but at least your vital organs will be fine.

Allergies: In dry weather the secretions from the nose become thicker, block the sinuses and create congestion, she explained. 

Usually the dry season is also one of shedding, as the leaves fall and pollen fills the air, since moisture is currently lacking and rain still hasn’t fallen.The combination of these two factors exacerbates allergies in those who suffer from them.

Hair loss:  Another problem that comes with shedding is hair loss from our scalps. 

Most people typically lose 80 to 100 strands of hair each day. Seasonal changes in the amount of hair falling out can occur, but this is a minor problem. The rule of thumb should be as follows: If the shedding lasts more than two months, see a dermatologist.

All of these problems are really unpleasant, but let's put things in proportion. It could be worse. You’re not dying. What can you do to feel better? Rinse salt water into the nose, use body wash for delicate skin, remove dry skin using a sponge, use eye drops and of course drink enough water to alleviate these annoying symptoms.