As winter approaches, the temperatures are plummeting. Being cold is unpleasant, and can lead to a huge range of health and mobility issues like colds and hypothermia. It can also affect the brain and disrupt your concentration, making it hard to concentrate and focus. Have you ever been in the office, and felt so cold that it started to affect your work? Here is a short introduction into how temperature and the brain interact, and how you can warm back up to keep working to your fullest potential.
Something you may have come across at school and promptly forgotten, homeostasis is the balancing of certain functions within the body. One of these functions that needs to be constantly regulated is body temperature, and this process is known as thermoregulation. The human body should be around 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. When the body heats up, heat-releasing mechanisms are stimulated to increase heat loss and vice versa. When the body gets too cold, metabolism is increased, you start shivering to generate heat, and the body restricts internal heat loss through the constriction of superficial arteries. This uses up a lot of the body’s energy, as the brain is focused on keeping the body temperature regulated.
With all this energy being spent on thermoregulation, the brain has less energy to put into focus and concentration. A study by Cornell University found that employees made the warmer the temperature of an office, the fewer mistakes. With their environment helping to maintain their body temperature, their brains were able to focus better on other tasks. Have you ever noticed that when you are too hot or cold, it’s often all you can think about? Temperature can be something we don’t notice until it’s wrong, and it can be incredibly distracting.
There are many ways to warm up and increase your body temperature again. Having a good heating system is very important, as it can warm your whole environment. There are plenty of heating options and radiators to choose from, and Warmrooms breaks down options into size, product, output and even color to help you make your choice. Further things you can do include frequently moving, which gets the blood flow moving around your body. This can be anything from gentle stretching to going for a jog. Food and drink that stimulates your metabolism, like caffeine, encourages thermoregulation and helps to warm you up. Increased metabolism encourages the body to burn more fuel, and regularly eating and drinking will keep your other bodily functions working too. It’s important to drink lots of water, which also contributes greatly to brain health and activity.
These are just a few very basic pieces of information to help you understand how a cold working environment can lead to less productivity. Making sure you are warm and comfortable is important, whether you are working in an office, warehouse, or from home. Not only is it great for your physical health, but it will also benefit your work results.