Feb 9, 2011

Tips on How to Detect Early Signs of Frostbite

Frostbite can be a serious problem when its super cold outside. No one really knows an exact amount of time, or temperature it takes to get frostbite. The best way of not getting frostbite, is by watching for the symptoms. Every year thousands of people get frostbite, and many of them will tell you they didn't know they had got frostbite until it was too late. Here are some signs to look for to make sure you and your family stay frostbite free...
  1. Some of the main symptoms are itching, burning, and numbness. Numbness usually happens when you are cold anyways, so don't just go off of numbness as a sign that you have frostbite. Nine times out of ten its just because its really cold. However the other signs itching and burning are something to really listen to, unless you have other reasons why this could be occurring I would get to a warm place quick. Once you warm up, you can get back out in the cold again. If you were to have a deep frostbite, then you will notice that your affected area will start swelling, there will be blanching of the skin, and your skin may also feel hard. As your skin warms if it turns to a whiteish or yellowish color then you may have frostbite, so it is time to go to the doctor.
  2. If you have decided that you do have frostbite, never rub or massage the affected area. This may result in even more deep tissue damage. This is not what you want, it will be painful later.
  3. Once frostbite has been spotted, don't rewarm your body, and go back out in the cold again. All this is going to do is make your frostbite get even worse. If you have decided that what you have is frostbite, you are done, I would stay inside, until symptoms go away and the color of your skin returns to normal. This could be longer then a few weeks.
  4. If you get any degree of frostbite, it is important that you seek medical attention as soon as possible.
I hoped this has helped you stay safe in the cold. It has been cold all over the United States recently and as I am writing this in Texas it is 24 degrees outside. We hardly ever drop below 32 (freezing) so I figured I would do a post about this. Remember to enjoy the cold weather wherever you are at, but at the same time be sure to be safe. Trust me, you don't want to have long term damage due to frostbite. It is extremely painful. Please leave comments if you feel I have left anything out. Thank you.

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