My body is lying to

i was inspired to post this by the cold hands thread

the other night it was pretty cold out, so i put an extra blanket on my bed (heating isn’t cheap). however, after a little while, i started to get too warm, and my feet even started to sweat a little bit. but when i reached down to adjust the covers, my feet felt cold to my touch!?!? what gives? in such an instance should i keep sweating or stick my feet out from underneath the blanket to cool off? and is my body lying to me :confused:

thanx in advance

Can’t really say for sure. The condition of sweating when it isn’t required is known as hyperhidrosis, and may be worth a visit to a doctor if it bugs you.

[pure, wild-ass speculation]I suspect that your feet felt cold to the touch simply because your hands were warmer, being nearer to the bulk of your body and, y’know, under a couple of blankets. I would further guess that your feet were sweating because you were nice n’ toasty, your body noticed, and wasn’t aware that no external heat source was present.[/pwas]

I have the same problem - I do whatever seems like it’ll make me comfortable, even if that means getting up and going for a brisk walk. So far I don’t appear to have died from sweaty yet cold feet at night, although there’s always the possibility of being murdered by a girlfriend when they drift in her direction.

You might look into a good-quality hot water bottle to keep the temperature even under the covers. Or a dog, which amounts to the same thing but poops and barks a great deal more often.

The sense of touch that distinguishes hot and cold is somewhat relative, and affected by psychological and physiological illusions.

If you’re very very cold, water at room temperature will feel hot. If you’re very very, hot, water at room temprature will feel cool.

Expectation that something will be hotter than it really is will make that thing feel cooler than if you expected it to be cooler. Expectation that something will be colder than it is will make that thing feel hotter than if you expected it to be hotter.

Also, some of your ability to gauge the temperature of an item will depend on its thermal conductivity. A cold piece of iron will feel a lot colder than a piece of wood at the same temperature becuase iron conducts heat away from your hands faster than wood.

And so, you got too hot under the covers. Your body reacted by sweating all over. Your hands were outside the cover, and so, they dried out while your feet remained wet. Since your hands were providing cooling to your body (since sweat was evaporating from them), your body shunted blood to your hands so that the blood can be cooled in the capillaries in the skin of your hand (and also shunted blood away from the feet which were just building up heat, since the sweat couldn’t evaporate quickly under the covers).

Blood forced into the skin of your hands will raise the temperature in your hands. Blood shunted away from your feet will lower the temperature of your feet. Warm hands touch cool feet = boy, the feet are very cold!


Our bodies lie to us all the time :slight_smile: Mine does literally every time I open my eyes. I can’t see shades of blue/purple red/green/brown so I get the next closest color.