With hunting season in full swing and ice fishing around the corner, we would like to remind everyone to stay safe, bundle up and wish you all good luck and offer some safety tips on avoiding Hypothermia and Frostbite.
Exposure to cold can lead to a number of health problems, including death. Some of the health problems caused by cold stress include frostbite and hypothermia, and they should be taken very serious.
You are at an increased risk for cold stress if:
- You have a predisposing health condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, or hyper-tension (high blood pressure).
- You take certain medications that might have a greater effect in cold weather
- You are in poor physical condition, have a poor diet, or are older.
What is frostbite?
Frostbite occurs when an area of the body is ex-posed to extreme cold for a pro-longed time and actually freezes, causing ice crystals to form between cells and draw water from them, which leads to cell dehydration.
What is hypothermia?
Severely reduced core body temperature that causes shivering, reduced mental alertness, and, sometimes, loss of consciousness. Because of factors such as wind chill, hypothermia can occur at 30-50 degrees F.
Note: Hypothermia is a medical emergency
To prevent problems caused by exposure to cold:
- Wear warm clothing (several thin layers are better than one thick one).
- Wear a face mask or scarf.
- Have easy access to warm shelter.
- Avoid dehydration (drink hot or warm caffeine-free liquids or fluids).
- Follow work/rest cycles that allow you to spend time in a warm shelter.
- Stay dry.
- Use the buddy system.
- If stranded, get out of the wind and stay active by stomping feet, clapping hands, or swinging arms to keep blood flowing and to keep your body warm.
- Go at once to a warm environment if severe shivering is present.