The harmattan is a season that occurs between November and the middle of March of the following year. It comes with dryness, cold, and dust. This season is also associated with low humidity.
The weather can trigger respiratory diseases, such as asthma, cough, catarrh, influenza, pneumonia, bronchitis, and sometimes, red eyes. It also exacerbates conditions like sore throat.
Stay hydrated: You will need to drink a lot of water because of the dry weather. You can also eat fruits to reinforce your immunity against infections.
Bathe with lukewarm water: It is better to have your bathe with lukewarm water instead of hot water. Bathing with lukewarm water will protect you against cold.
Rinse your face with clean water: Keep proper eye hygiene by rinsing with clean water. Rinsing your eyes with clean water will help to avoid red eyes during this period.
Moisturise regularly: Make sure you apply oily creams on your skin to avoid dry skin. You may consider applying petroleum jelly to the soles of your feet to prevent them from cracking.
Pay attention to your hands and lips: To avoid cracked lips, use lip balm or lip gloss. Ensure you also moisturise your hands properly to prevent dryness.
Close your doors, and windows: Your doors and windows should always be shut to avoid letting in dust and harmful bugs. Inflammable things like petrol, gas, wood, and alcohol should also be put away to avoid fire outbreaks.
Wear weather-friendly clothes: To protect yourself from the cold, you should wear more wool-based clothes as against cotton which is common and mostly suitable for other seasons.
Cover your nose and mouth: Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or towel when it is dusty.
Take Vitamin C: One of the ways to stay healthy during harmattan is to take vitamin supplements as much as possible. Vitamin C will help to reduce the possibility of contracting the flu.
Pay attention to your health: It is important you pay attention to your health, especially asthma patients and take practicable measures to reduce exposure to the dusty atmosphere. Get medical help if you have running, itchy, sneezing, stuffy nose, red, itchy, and watery eyes. Avoid or reduce outdoor activities if you are allergic to dust or cold.