These 6 Old Health Beliefs You’ve Always Believed Are Actually (Totally) False
Urinating on a jellyfish sting, stepping away from the television to protect your eyesight… Since your childhood, you’ve heard your grandmother tirelessly repeat this advice to you, which in fact has no medical basis. Explanations.
Before going on vacation, we warned you: if a jellyfish stings you, you have to urinate on it. But this assertion – which nearly three in ten Britons would be ready to put into practice according to a survey – would in fact be completely unfounded and could even have more serious consequences by reactivating the venom, and therefore the pain.
“We advise the public to avoid bodily fluids if they are unlucky enough to get stung and to follow some simple steps that do not involve the use of urine as a remedy.“, rather indicates Jack Willans, working at the Sea Life aquarium in London, in MailOnline. Instead, prefer sea water, baking soda or heat, because like wasp venom, that of jellyfish is thermolabile.
Likewise, walking around in winter with wet hair won’t automatically make you sick, as your mother or grandmother always told you. It is in fact the climatic conditions, colder and more humid, which favor the gatherings of crowds and the mixing of populations. A period also where the deficiency vitamin D is stronger, leading to weaknesses in the immune system.
Every day, false beliefs are conveyed, while they have no scientific proof. Since it’s safe to go swimming within two hours of a meal and cracking your fingers won’t cause arthritis, here are six health beliefs that everyone believes, but are actually completely false.
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Watching TV too closely damages the eyes We have all heard our parents or grandparents advise us to stay away from the television, at the risk of damaging our eyes. But this assertion would in fact be false. Experts from the American Academy of Ophthalmology have even explained that young children are more likely to stare at a nearby screen or book because their eyes can see better up close than adults. A habit that gets lost with age. Being too close to a screen can nevertheless generate eye fatigue, such as pain, headaches or even blurred vision.
Keep drinking the next day to avoid a hangover To avoid the headaches and nausea of a day after a drunken evening, what better than to “fight evil with evil”? This statement comes from the theory that a hangover is actually a form of alcohol withdrawal. Alcohol can also stimulate endorphins, temporarily masking the hangover. But that’s only temporary and ‘people will eventually have to stop drinking and could end up with an even worse hangover than the one they were fighting’, Dr Robert Swift tells MailOnline.
Pee on a jellyfish sting to relieve it If this received idea is one of the most widespread at the beach, it is largely because of the Friends series. In an episode aired in 1997, Chandler’s character urinates on Monica, claiming that ammonia is in the urine and that it can neutralize pain. But this is totally wrong! In fact, urinating on a jellyfish sting can even make the situation worse. Rather than covering the wound with urine, rinse it with seawater and apply sand or baking soda to it.
The five second rule You drop food on the floor. But according to this urban myth, if there are less than five seconds left on the ground, consuming it remains without any danger. Indeed, that five-second duration would not be long enough for germs and dirt to infect it. But according to a study by Rutgers University in New Jersey, the bacteria would spread instantly once in contact with the food, making it potentially at risk for the consumer.
going out with wet hair Does going out with wet hair when it’s cold really make you sick? For scientists, this gesture alone is not enough: you have to come into contact with a virus or harmful bacteria to get sick. This belief comes mainly from the fact that we are more likely to catch cold at low temperatures, ie in winter. But it is above all a period when indoor gatherings are more frequent and during which the immune system tends to be weaker, and therefore makes it more vulnerable to all types of diseases.
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