Monday, January 08, 2007

Room temperature and health risks

Article on BBC website explores why the death rate in the UK during winter due to cold is significantly worse than really cold countries. It is interesting because it points out that most UK deaths are not due to 'massive cold' where people are exposed to very cold temperatures, but to 'quite minor degrees of cold that people were getting every day.' The actual cause of death in these cases is stroke and heart attack because the blood is more liable to clot when cold.

Comfort and health issues are quoted from the West Midlands Public Health Observatory

24C - top range of comfort
21C - recommended living room temperature
Less than 20C - death risk begins
18C - recommended bedroom temperature
16C - resistance to respiratory diseases weakened
12C - more than two hours at this temperature raises blood pressure and increases heart attack and stroke risk
5C - Significant risk of hypothermia

People in cold countries keep their houses warmer and take outdoor clothing much more seriously.

Andy Brazier

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