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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Body Temperature
Answer: Feeling cold and losing body heat are not the same thing. The sensation of cold has to do with an
inability to keep any part of the body at the desired temperature, usually 98.6 or so. Burning
calories and supplying heated blood to an area of the body will keep it at desired temperature
and therefore no sensation of cold or chill. Inability to supply heated blood will rapidly lead to the
feeling of chill or cold, as will external chilling requiring an additional blood flow to an area.
Consequently, vasoconstriction (due to an infection, spasm, etc.) will result in a feeling of
chill, whereas a heated tub will not. From a thermodynamic point of view, the 85 degree tub
represents a loss of heat from the body to the pool, whereas vasospasm does not. However, the
feeling of chill does not have anything to do with thermodynamic flow of heat.