Bracing Below Freezing Temps


If you haven’t brought out the mittens and heavy coats, it’s about time to do so.

Incoming snow this winter season can be a beautiful sight, but the below freezing conditions can cause health problems for those who aren’t prepared.

The two biggest health concerns regarding freezing temps are hypothermia and frostbite.

Hypothermia occurs when the body’s temperature falls below 95 degrees.

According to Dr. Anita Toussi, Medical Director of Union Hospital’s Emergency Department, signs of hypothermia include, “Confusion, they start shivering and they may have some slurred speech”.

Areas to protect from hypothermia include the chest, head, neck and groin.

Frostbite occurs when the skin becomes very cold, begins to tingle and then go completely numb.

“Please do not massage any parts that are frostbitten because that destroys the capillaries under the skin and do not use any heating pads,” said Dr. Toussi.

To avoid frostbite and hypothermia dress warmly in gloves, hats, scarves, boots, and thick winter coats.

Dr. Toussi highly encourages anyone experiencing hypothermia symptoms or extreme frostbite to head straight to the hospital for immediate medical attention.


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