Healthcare: Whether the cooler months have fallen and you’re feeling the chill in your bones or your work environment is kept cold, shivering a shift away is bound to freeze your productivity as your comfort levels (and even your overall health) plummet with the temperature. Luckily, something as simple as the scrubs uniform that you wear daily can help you stay warm and comfortable throughout a shift — it’s just about choosing the right ones and pairing them with the right pieces! Whether it is wearing something under your scrubs, wearing something on top of your scrubs, slipping your feet into the right socks or just making sure that your scrubs are the right materials, you don’t have to control the weather to stay warm in this landscape.
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Why This Is SO Important
Medical facilities prevent bacteria from growing by lowering the temperature — so they are always at the very least chilly. Even despite this, however, you will start to sweat at some point, thanks to the fast-paced nature of your role. When combined with the cooler air of the hospital or healthcare, the sweat that you’ve worked up will definitely help to cool you down, but probably too much and too rapidly.
It can be detrimental to your health to constantly be tensing your muscles as you shiver, holding an increased heart rate as your body tries to regulate its temperature, and much more — only to be overheating a moment later. Making your body try to regulate its temperature while it endures these rapid shifts and is expected to work on at full force, on a daily basis especially, isn’t a healthy feat of strength. Extreme temperature shifts can have significant and abundant negative effects on your health, so it’s essential (and incredibly easy!) to help your body out.
Healthcare – Ways to Keep Warm
Layering is key when it comes to staying warm, and being able to shed those layers if you’re running around and working up a sweat (as you undoubtedly will be) is essential. You’ll want to consider and incorporate any, and even ALL, of these pieces into your wardrobe to achieve this:
- The Overlooked Undershirt
The undershirt is a tried and true temperature regulation tool. For ladies in particular, an undershirt of almost any variety will help you to not only keep warm, but keep and even amplify your silhouette and femininity, both inside and out. A good undershirt should cling just enough to stay out of your way while you work, but not so tight that you’re uncomfortable.
- The Life-Saving Long-Sleeve Tee
This effortless layering piece checks off all the boxes. Long sleeves to combat chilly weather and settings? Fashionable styling? Comfortable fabric for work and weekends alike? The best long-sleeve scrubs will be versatile and perfect for any setting, temperature, weather, role or outfit!
- The Versatile Vest
A good vest can be an extremely versatile piece. Since they’re sleeveless, vests are quick and easy to slip on and off when needed, and they are excellent when it comes to keeping out of your way while you work. Along with keeping out of your way when you need them to, this is a piece that is right there with its functional features (like incredible pocket space, removable hoods, side stretch panels and a lightweight and breathable design) when you do need it.
- The Unscathed-by-the-Weather Warm-Up Jacket
As a healthcare worker, a functional jacket is as essential to your wardrobe as you are to the landscape. Look for features like plentiful pockets, stretch panels where they matter, instrument loops, detachable hoods and prints or colors that will go with any scrubs. Ultra-functional and ultra-fashionable, a warm-up jacket is a must for your work wardrobe — though it’s bound to get worn everywhere!
- The Longjohn’s Legacy: Leggings
When it comes to leg-focused underwear, leggings are one of the best and can be extremely helpful when worn under your scrub bottoms. This is a piece that doesn’t call for anything fancy or expensive — in fact, the more subdued and less noteworthy they are, the better. Simple body-hugging leggings that hide easily under your daily scrubs don’t call attention to themselves if they do get seen, and which fit you well, are all you need here.
- The Small and Stylish Heat-Supply: Socks
Socks will be one of the few pieces in your wardrobe as a healthcare professional where you can really showcase your style. Along with this, your feet directly impact how warm the rest of your body is and, often, how comfortable you are. Whether you aim for specialty features from compression socks to support your wellbeing, socks in the best materials to combat your sweaty feet, something to provide cushioning throughout your 12-hour shift or simply an extra layer to help you stay warm — it’s easy to check off most of these boxes with a single pair and express yourself while you do!
- The Mittens Your Mother Would Love to See You Wear
Along with the repeated washing, sanitizing and frequent usage, your hands can suffer extra during the winter months or in colder environments. Whenever you get the chance or feel the need, make sure to look after your hands and put on a warm pair of mittens. You can also ensure you have something with nice pockets to slip your hands into, or can even double up on nearby disposable medical gloves if you need to for a bit of relief.
- Making the Most of These Pieces with the Right Materials
The trick to not only staying warm but not overheating is choosing the right materials for all of the pieces noted above, as well as for your scrubs themselves. You’ll want to choose the proper materials and fits, as well as look for moisture-wicking qualities and breathability from your fabrics in order to keep the sweat off of you. Ideally, to keep you warm while working in a position like this, you will want to look for: cottons, polyesters, four-way stretch fabrics, spandex, bamboo or mixes and blends of these materials.
The key to keeping warm while working in healthcare is to know yourself. Certain medications, conditions or deficiencies may leave you more sensitive to the cold and make it harder for you to tolerate. If this is the case for you, consider taking steps to improve your sleep, incorporate more body-warming foods and get regular and proper exercise.
Healthcare- More Than Just Keeping Warm …
Working in healthcare can often mean sacrificing some of your own personal comforts to ensure the comfort and safety of everyone else involved — but only if you’re not prepared. Cold surroundings, sweat-inducing workloads, long hours and being on the top of your game while you take it all on demands the proper scrubs and pairings. Picking the right pieces, in the right materials, will help to keep you warm in your scrubs, cool on the job and hot in your outfit!