Q: With winter finally arriving, is it true that more people fall ill in winter vs. summer?

A: The month with the most people sick is usually September.  The primary driver is kids going back to school and the mass spreading of germs.  Outside of September, it is generally true that the winter tends to be worse than summer for illnesses.

Some of the reasons include:

  • People spend more times indoors
  • People are less active in cold weather.  Less activity negatively impacts the health of the immune system
  • Cold weather suppresses the immune processes that defend against infection
  • Viruses stay suspended in winter air longer (when exhaled, the moisture surrounding the virus evaporates quickly, making the viruses lighter)
  • The most common ailments, the common cold and influenza, are winter viruses

How to combat:

  • Get outside
  • Remain active and exercise consistently
  • Get a flu shot
  • Wash your hands frequently/cover your mouth when you cough
  • Maintain proper nutrition


The following websites were used in answering the question: