Cold Weather Tips
Jack Frost is really trippin’. I live in Buffalo, NY and even I think it is cold. Do you have a checklist for what to do when it’s chilly? Ok, it’s more than a little chilly in the northeast and around the country. The Big Chill is on. With temperatures below freezing and often in the single digits you need to know what to do to stay healthy and warm. Serious health problems can result from prolonged exposure to the cold.
Children, the elderly and those with heart disease are at special risk. Body temperature that is too low can affect the brain and heart function. When exposed to cold temperatures, your body begins to lose heat faster than it can be produced which can result in hypothermia or abnormally low body temperature. So, what’s a mom to do when kids are begging to make snow angels, Dad wants to go to the game and you just want to get out and do some retail therapy?
Combat the cold with this easy checklist:
- Dress in layers so you can adjust to changing conditions. You also form a protective insulation from the air that is trapped in between layers.
- Most of your body heat is lost through your head so wear a hat, preferably one that covers your ears which are particularly prone to frostbite.
- Mittens provide more warmth to your hands than gloves.
- Wear waterproof, insulated boots to help avoid hypothermia or frostbite by keeping your feet warm and dry and to maintain your footing in ice and snow.
- If possible, avoid being outside in the coldest part of the day, or for extended periods of time in extreme cold weather.
- Take frequent breaks and stay hydrated.
- Get out of wet clothes immediately and warm the core body temperature with a blanket or warm fluids like hot cider or soup.
- Cover your mouth as this will protect your lungs from extremely cold air.. Do this especially if you are prone to upper respiratory problems.
- Avoid Alcohol. When you consume alcohol you may initially feel warm. This is because alcohol dilates blood vessels. However, it then draws heat away from your vital organs. Increased heat loss enhances your odds of experiencing a hypothermic event.