Extreme cold-guide[1]

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  • 1. Centers for Disease Control and PreventionU.S. Department of Health And Human Services U.S. Department of Health And Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • 2. http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/ 1-888-232-6789; EHHEinq@cdc.gov 4700 Buford Hwy, Atlanta, GA 30341-3717 National Center for Environmental Health, MS F52 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention For more information on cold weather conditions and health, please contact:For more information on hot weather conditions and health, please contact: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Environmental Health, MS F52 4700 Buford Hwy, Atlanta, GA 30341-3717 1-888-232-6789; EHHEinq@cdc.gov http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/
  • 3. 1 and what to do if a cold-weather health emergency arises. should know how to prevent cold-related health problemsthat is poorly insulated or without heat. can be affected. To keep yourself and your family safe, youwithout shelter or who are stranded, or who live in a home Infants and the elderly are particularly at risk, but anyonehealth emergencies in susceptible people, such as those can cause other serious or life-threatening health problems. eat-related deaths and illness are include age, obesity, fever, dehydration, heart disease, mentalExtreme cold is a dangerous situation that can bring on Exposure to cold temperatures, whether indoors or outside, preventable yet annually many people illness, poor circulation, sunburn, and prescription drug andrelated conditions may lead to serious health problems. succumb to extreme heat. Historically, alcohol use.heat can leave your body more rapidly. These weather- monoxide poisoning. from 1979 to 1999, excessive heat Because heat-related deaths are preventable, people need todrop decidedly below normal and as wind speed increases, household fires increases, as well as the risk of carbon exposure caused 8,015 deaths in the be aware of who is at greatest risk and what actions can beare considered “extreme cold.” Whenever temperatures use space heaters and fireplaces to stay warm, the risk of United States. During this period, taken to prevent a heat-related illness or death. The elderly,unaccustomed to winter weather, near freezing temperatures system isn’t adequate for the weather. When people must more people in this country died from extreme heat than the very young, and people with mental illness and chronicacross different areas of the country. In regions relatively cold—either due to a power failure or because the heating from hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, floods, and earth- diseases are at highest risk. However, even young andWhat constitutes extreme cold and its effects can vary may also face indoor hazards. Many homes will be too quakes combined. In 2001, 300 deaths were caused by healthy individuals can succumb to heat if they participate help reduce the risk of car crashes and falls on the ice, you excessive heat exposure. in strenuous physical activities during hot weather. What Is Extreme Cold? icy roads. Although staying indoors as much as possible can may have to cope with power failures and People suffer heat-related illness when their bodies are Air-conditioning is the number one protective factor and what to do until help becomes available. often accompany a winter storm, so you unable to compensate and properly cool themselves. The against heat-related illness and death. If a home is not you to know when to seek medical care lenge. Extremely cold temperatures body normally cools itself by sweating. But under some air-conditioned, people can reduce their risk for heat-related aid. However, these procedures will help warm and safe can become a chal- conditions, sweating just isn’t enough. In such cases, a illness by spending time in public facilities that are are not a substitute for training in first significantly below normal, staying person’s body temperature rises rapidly. Very high body air-conditioned. temperatures may damage the brain or other vital organs. The emergency procedures outlined here hen winter temperatures drop Summertime activity, whether on the playing field or the Several factors affect the body’s ability to cool itself during construction site, must be balanced with measures that aid extremely hot weather. When the humidity is high, sweat the body’s cooling mechanisms and prevent heat-related will not evaporate as quickly, preventing the body from illness. This pamphlet tells how you can prevent, recognize, releasing heat quickly. Other conditions related to risk and cope with heat-related health problems. 1
  • 4. 2Plan Ahead Emergency Supplies List: • an alternate way to heat your home during a power failure: cause stomach cramps. cold drinks, because they can dangerous situation. rainfall. A heat wave combined with a drought is a veryPrepare for extremely cold weather every winter—it’s - dry firewood for a fireplace or wood stove, or more body fluid. Also avoid very Droughts occur when a long period passes without substantialalways a possibility. There are steps you can take in advance - kerosene for a kerosene heater these actually cause you to lose hot conditions can provoke dust storms and low visibility.for greater wintertime safety in your home and in your car. • furnace fuel (coal, propane, or oil) alcohol, or large amounts of sugar— traps hazy, damp air near the ground. Excessively dry and • electric space heater with automatic Don’t drink liquids that contain caffeine, tures, occur when a “dome” of high atmospheric pressure shut-off switch and non-glowing elements conditions, which add to the discomfort of high tempera- • blankets drink while the weather is hot. weeks are defined as extreme heat. Humid or muggy Winter Survival Kit for Your Home • matches on water pills, ask how much you should average high temperature for the region and last for several Keep several days’ supply of these items: • multipurpose, dry-chemical fire extinguisher the amount of fluid you drink or has you Temperatures that hover 10 degrees or more above the • Food that needs no cooking or refrigeration, • first aid kit and instruction manual Warning: If your doctor generally limits What Is Extreme Heat? such as bread, crackers, cereal, canned foods, • flashlight or battery-powered lantern each hour. and dried fruits. Remember baby food and • battery-powered radio glasses (16–32 ounces) of cool fluids formula if you have young children. • battery-powered clock or watch in a hot environment, drink two to four • Water stored in clean containers, or purchased • extra batteries you’re thirsty to drink. During heavy exercise bottled water (5 gallons per person) in case • non-electric can opener intake, regardless of your activity level. Don’t wait until your water pipes freeze and rupture. • snow shovel During hot weather you will need to increase your fluid • Medicines that any family member may need. • rock salt Drink Plenty of Fluids • special needs items (diapers, If your area is prone to long periods of cold hearing aid batteries, temperatures, or if your home is isolated, stock medications, etc.) following tips are important: additional amounts of food, water, and medicine. high, remember to keep cool and use common sense. The To protect your health when temperatures are extremely During Hot Weather2
  • 5. 3 during the winter months. Replace Salt and Minerals sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher (the most check the temperature of your home often Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body. effective products say “broad spectrum” location where you will see it frequently, and These are necessary for your body and must be replaced. If or “UVA/UVB protection” on their place an easy-to-read thermometer in an indoor you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, non- labels) 30 minutes prior to going out. problems caused by cold. If you are over 65 years old, alcoholic fluids each hour. A sports beverage can replace Continue to reapply it according to the age, and older people are more susceptible to health the salt and minerals you lose in sweat. However, if you are package directions. Your ability to feel a change in temperature decreases with on a low-salt diet, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage or taking salt tablets. Schedule Outdoor them monthly, and replace batteries twice yearly. carbon monoxide detector near the area to be heated. Test Activities Carefully heater, install a smoke detector and a battery-operated Wear Appropriate Clothing If you must be outdoors, try to limit Also, if you’ll be using a fireplace, wood stove, or kerosene and Sunscreen your outdoor activity to morning Wear as little clothing as possible when you are at home. and evening hours. Try to rest under “chimney cleaning.” Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. often in shady areas so that your or find one in the yellow pages of your telephone directory Sunburn affects your body’s ability to cool itself and causes body’s thermostat will have a chance to recover. Ask your local fire department to recommend an inspector, a loss of body fluids. It also causes pain and damages the heating, have your chimney or flue inspected each year.and make sure that they have access to unfrozen water. skin. If you must go outdoors, Pace Yourself If you plan to use a fireplace or wood stove for emergencythem inside, provide adequate shelter to keep them warm protect yourself from the If you are not accustomed to working or exercising in a hotIf you have pets, bring them indoors. If you cannot bring whenever a period of extreme cold is predicted. sun by wearing a environment, start slowly and pick up the pace gradually. Ifor thermal-pane windows. forecasts regularly, and check your emergency supplies wide-brimmed exertion in the heat makes your heart pound and leaves youstripping, insulation, insulated doors and storm windows, you with several days’ notice. Listen to weather hat (also keeps gasping for breath, STOP all activity. Get into a cool areapossible, weatherproof your home by adding weather- far in advance, weather forecasts can sometimes provide you cooler) along or at least into the shade, and rest, especially if you becomeyour water supply will be less likely to freeze. To the extent Although periods of extreme cold cannot always be predicted with sunglasses, lightheaded, confused, weak, or faint.Insulate any water lines that run along exterior walls so Prepare Your Home for Winter and by putting on 3
  • 6. 4Stay Cool Indoors Monitor Those at High RiskStay indoors and, if at all possible, stay in an air-conditioned Although any one at any time can suffer from heat-relatedplace. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to illness, some people are at greater risk than others.the shopping mall or public library—even a few hours • Infants and children up to four years of age are for added traction)spent in air conditioning can help your body stay cooler sensitive to the effects of high temperatures and rely on • brightly colored cloth (to pour on ice or snowwhen you go back into the heat. Call your local health others to regulate their environments and provide emergency tire repair) • bag of sand or cat litterdepartment to see if there are any heat-relief shelters in adequate liquids. air with sealant (for • paper towelsyour area. Electric fans may provide comfort, but when the • People 65 years of age or older may not compensate for • canned compressed • tool kittemperature is in the high 90s, fans will not prevent heat- heat stress efficiently and are less likely to sense and batteries • compassrelated illness. Taking a cool shower or bath or moving to respond to change in temperature. • flashlight and extra • mobile phone and fuel lines.an air-conditioned place is a much better way to cool off. • People who are overweight may be prone to heat sickness and a can opener • road maps full to help avoid ice in the tankUse your stove and oven less to maintain a cooler temperature because of their tendency to retain more body heat. canned or dried foods • booster cables During winter, keep the gas tank nearin your home. • People who overexert during work or exercise may and high-calorie • windshield scraper air pressure in the tires. become dehydrated and susceptible to heat sickness. • container of water snow for water) • Replace any worn tires, and check theUse a Buddy System • People who are physically ill, especially with heart • collapsible shovel matches (to melt • Replace windshield-wiper fluid with a wintertime mixture.When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your disease or high blood pressure, or who take certain with heavy snow) • a can and waterproof Add antifreeze, as needed.co-workers and have someone do the same for you. Heat- medications, such as for depression, insomnia, or poor • tire chains (in areas • first aid kit antifreeze level yourself with an antifreeze tester.induced illness can cause a person to become confused or circulation, may be affected by extreme heat. • tow rope • blankets • Have the radiator system serviced, or check thelose consciousness. If you are 65 years of age or older, have Visit adults at risk at least twice a day and closely watch Equip your car with these items: every fall:a friend or relative call to check on you twice a day during them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Infants and Winter Survival Kit for Your Car as often as the manufacturer recommends. In addition,a heat wave. If you know someone in this age group, check young children, of course, need much more frequent watching. planning ahead. Have maintenance service on your vehicleon them at least twice a day. You can avoid many dangerous winter travel problems by Prepare Your Car for Winter4
  • 7. 5 the water in a shady area. Indoor Safety • If your space heater has a damaged electrical cord or produces sparks, do not use it. Heat Your Home Safely • Store a multipurpose, dry-chemical fire extinguisher near • Provide plenty of fresh water for your pets, and leave the area to be heated. • Do not leave infants, children, or pets in a parked car. If you plan to use a wood stove, fireplace, or space heater, • Protect yourself from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning by of potential severe exposure such as beaches. be extremely careful. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions installing a battery-operated CO detector and never using • Limit sun exposure during mid-day hours and in places as well as the home safety measures on page 3, and remember generators, grills, camp stoves, or similar devices indoors. shade their heads and faces with hats or an umbrella. these safety tips: • Dress infants and children in cool, loose clothing and • Use fireplace, wood stoves, or other combustion heaters Light and Cook Safely and minerals in your body. only if they are properly vented to the outside and do not If there is a power failure: • Drink plenty of fluids and replace salts leak flue gas into the indoor air space. • Use battery-powered flashlights or they add heat to your body. • Do not burn paper in a fireplace. lanterns rather than candles, if possible. • Avoid hot foods and heavy meals— • Ensure adequate ventilation if you must use a • Never leave lit candles unattended. Remember to keep cool and use common sense: kerosene heater. • Never use a charcoal or gas grill indoors— Use Common Sense • Use only the type of fuel your heater is designed to use— the fumes are deadly. don’t substitute. exercise, and work up to it gradually. • Do not place a space heater within 3 feet of anything that Never use an electric generator indoors, become acclimated before attempting any vigorous may catch on fire, such as drapes, furniture, or bedding, inside the garage, or near the air intake of your If you travel to a hotter climate, allow several days to and never cover your space heater. house because of the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning: physical activity until you become accustomed to the heat. • Never place a space heater on top of furniture or near water. • Plug in appliances to the generator using individual will have a greater tolerance for heat if you limit your • Never leave children unattended near a space heater. heavy-duty, outdoor-rated cords. early summer heat wave, will be stressful to your body. You • Make sure that the cord of an electric space heater is not a • Do not use the generator or appliances if they are wet Be aware that any sudden change in temperature, such as an tripping hazard but do not run the cord under carpets or rugs. because of the risk of electrocution. Adjust to the Environment • Avoid using extension cords to plug in your space heater. • Do not store gasoline indoors where the fumes could ignite. 5
  • 8. 6Conserve Heat years of age, check the temperature in your home oftenYou may need fresh air coming in for your heater or for during severely cold weather. Also, check on elderly to give first aid treatment.emergency cooking arrangements. However, if you don’t friends and neighbors frequently to ensure that their homes of heat disorders and overexposure to the sun, and be readyneed extra ventilation, keep as much heat as possible inside are adequately heated. Unconsciousness • place can cause heat-related illnesses. Know the symptomsyour home. Avoid unnecessary opening of doors or windows. Confusion • too much time in the sun or staying too long in an overheatedClose off unneeded rooms, stuff towels or rags in cracks Keep a Water Supply Nausea • health problems. Doing too much on a hot day, spendingunder doors, and close draperies or cover windows with Extreme cold can cause water pipes in your Dizziness • Even short periods of high temperatures can cause seriousblankets at night. home to freeze and sometimes rupture. Throbbing headache • Emergencies When very cold temperatures are expected: Rapid, strong pulse •Monitor Body Temperature • Leave all water taps slightly open so they (no sweating) Hot Weather Health • Red, hot, and dry skinInfants less than one year old should never sleep in a cold drip continuously. (above 103°F, orally)room because (1) infants lose body heat more easily than • Keep the indoor temperature warm. • An extremely high body temperatureadults; and (2) unlike adults, infants can’t make enough • Improve the circulation of heated air nearbody heat by shivering. Provide warm clothing for infants pipes. For example, open kitchen cabinet include the following:and try to maintain a warm indoor temperature. If the doors beneath the kitchen sink. Warning signs of heat stroke vary but maytemperature cannot be maintained, make temporary Recognizing Heat Strokearrangements to stay elsewhere. In an emergency, you can If your pipes do freeze, do not thaw them with a torch.keep an infant warm using your own body heat. If you must Instead, thaw them slowly by directing the warm air from disability if emergency treatment is not provided.sleep, take precautions to prevent rolling on the baby. an electric hair dryer onto the pipes. 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent down. Body temperature may rise to 106°F or higher withinPillows and other soft bedding can also present a risk of If you cannot thaw your pipes, or the pipes are ruptured, sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to coolsmothering; remove them from the area near the baby. use bottled water or get water from a neighbor’s home. As temperature. The body’s temperature rises rapidly, theOlder adults often make less body heat because of a slower an emergency measure—if no other water is available— Heat stroke occurs when the body is unable to regulate itsmetabolism and less physical activity. If you are over 65 snow can be melted for water. Bringing water to a rolling Heat Stroke6
  • 9. 7and people working or exercising in a hot environment. boil for one minute will kill most microorganisms or parasites Dress Warmly and Stay Dryexhaustion are elderly people, people with high blood pressure, that may be present, but won’t remove chemical pollutants Adults and children should wear:and salt contained in sweat. Those most prone to heat sometimes found in snow. • a hatIt is the body’s response to an excessive loss of the water • a scarf or knit mask toatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids. Eat and Drink Wisely cover face and mouthcan develop after several days of exposure to high temper- • Get medical assistance as soon as possible. Eating well-balanced meals will help you • sleeves that are snug at the wristHeat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that • Do not give the victim fluids to drink. stay warmer. Do not drink alcoholic or • mittens (they are warmer than gloves) Heat Exhaustion hospital emergency room for further instructions. caffeinated beverages—they cause your • water-resistant coat and boots • If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call the body to lose heat more rapidly. Instead, • several layers of loose- efforts until the body temperature drops to 101–102°F. drink warm, sweet beverages or broth to fitting clothing • Monitor body temperature, and continue cooling help maintain your body temperature. If or her vigorously. you have any dietary restrictions, ask Be sure the outer layer of your clothing is tightly woven, is low, wrap the victim in a cool, wet sheet and fan him your doctor. preferably wind resistant, to reduce body-heat loss caused sponge the person with cool water; or if the humidity by wind. Wool, silk, or polypropylene inner layers of spray the victim with cool water from a garden hose; clothing will hold more body heat than cotton. Stay dry— cool water; place the person in a cool shower; Outdoor Safety wet clothing chills the body rapidly. Excess perspiration will increase heat loss, so remove extra layers of clothing can. For example, immerse the victim in a tub of When the weather is extremely cold, and especially if there • Cool the victim rapidly using whatever methods you are high winds, try to stay indoors. Make any trips outside whenever you feel too warm. Also, avoid getting gasolinethe victim on his or her side. • Get the victim to a shady area. as brief as possible, and remember these tips to protect your or alcohol on your skin while de-icing and fueling your carvomiting, make sure the airway remains open by turning Do the following: health and safety: or using a snow blower. These materials in contact with theobject in the mouth and do not give fluids. If there is medical assistance while you begin cooling the victim. skin greatly increase heat loss from the body. Do not ignorekeep the victim from injuring himself, but do not place any life-threatening emergency. Have someone call for immediate shivering. It’s an important first sign that the body is losinguncontrollably as a result of heat stroke. If this happens, If you see any of these signs, you may be dealing with a heat. Persistent shivering is a signal to return indoors.Sometimes a victim’s muscles will begin to twitch What to Do 7
  • 10. 8 http://www.nws.noaa.gov/om/windchill/ National Weather Service (NWS) Wind Chill Chart adapted May 2004 fromRecognizing Heat Exhaustion What to DoWarning signs of heat exhaustion include the following: Cooling measures that may be effective include the following:• Heavy sweating • Dizziness • Cool, nonalcoholic beverages, as and amount of time until frostbite occurs.• Paleness • Headache directed by your physician between actual air temperature and perceived temperature,• Muscle cramps • Nausea or vomiting • Rest The Wind Chill Chart to the right shows the difference• Tiredness • Fainting • Cool shower, bath, or more likely, even when temperatures are only cool.• Weakness sponge bath are high winds, serious weather-related health problems are • An air-conditionedThe skin may be cool and moist. The victim’s pulse rate environment more quickly, causing skin temperature to drop. When therewill be fast and weak, and breathing will be fast and shallow. • Lightweight clothing increases, it can carry heat away from your body muchIf heat exhaustion is untreated, it may progress to heat by the effects of wind and cold. As the speed of the windstroke. Seek medical attention immediately if any of the It is based on the rate of heat loss from exposed skin causedfollowing occurs: Heat Cramps when the air temperature is combined with the wind speed. Heat cramps usually affect people who sweat a lot during The Wind Chill index is the temperature your body feels• Symptoms are severe strenuous activity. This sweating depletes the body’s salt• The victim has heart problems or high blood pressure Understand Wind Chill and moisture. The low salt level in the muscles causesOtherwise, help the victim to cool off, and seek medical painful cramps. Heat cramps may also be a symptom of don’t overdo it.attention if symptoms worsen or last longer than 1 hour. heat exhaustion. your body is already working hard just to stay warm, so door chores, dress warmly and work slowly. Remember, Recognizing Heat Cramps work in the cold. Otherwise, if you have to do heavy out- Heat cramps are muscle pains or spasms—usually in the advice about shoveling snow or performing other hard abdomen, arms, or legs—that may occur in association heart disease or high blood pressure, follow your doctor’s with strenuous activity. If you have heart problems or are Cold weather puts an extra strain on the heart. If you have on a low-sodium diet, get medical attention for heat cramps. Avoid Exertion8
  • 11. 9 Avoid Ice Be Cautious About Travel red, painful, and abnormally warm after sun exposure. Walking on ice is extremely dangerous. Many cold-weather • Listen for radio or television reports of travel Symptoms of sunburn are well known: the skin becomes • Do not break blisters. injuries result from falls on ice-covered sidewalks, steps, advisories issued by the National Weather Service. Recognizing Sunburn butter, or ointment. driveways, and porches. Keep your steps and walkways as • Do not travel in low visibility conditions. affected areas. Do not use salve, medical attention. free of ice as possible by using rock salt or another chemical • Avoid traveling on ice-covered roads, • Apply moisturizing lotion to occurs in about a week, a more severe sunburn may require de-icing compound. Sand may also be used on walkways to overpasses, and bridges if at all possible. the sunburned area in cool water. Although the discomfort is usually minor and healing often reduce the risk of slipping. • If you must travel by car, use tire chains • Apply cold compresses or immerse Sunburn should be avoided because it damages the skin. and take a mobile phone with you. • Avoid repeated sun exposure. Sunburn Be Safe During Recreation • If you must travel, let someone know treating sunburn: Notify friends and family where you will be before you go your destination and when you Also, remember these tips when hiking, camping, or skiing. Do not leave areas of the skin expect to arrive. Ask them to notify 1 hour. exposed to the cold. Avoid perspiring or becoming over- authorities if you are late.• Severe pain cramps if they do not subside in tired. Be prepared to take emergency shelter. Pack dry • Check and restock the winter emergency• Fluid-filled blisters • Seek medical attention for heat clothing, a two-wave radio, waterproof matches and paraffin supplies in your car before you leave.• Fever heat stroke. fire starters with you. Do not use alcohol and other mood • Never pour water on your windshield tothan 1 year of age or if these symptoms are present: may lead to heat exhaustion or altering substances, and avoid caffeinated beverages. remove ice or snow; shattering may occur.Consult a doctor if the sunburn affects an infant younger subside, because further exertion Avoid walking on ice or getting wet. Carefully watch for • Don’t rely on a car to provide sufficient heat;What to Do for a few hours after the cramps signs of cold-weather health problems. the car may break down. • Do not return to strenuous activity • Always carry additional warm clothing • Drink clear juice or a sports beverage. appropriate for the winter conditions. cool place. • Stop all activity, and sit quietly in a If medical attention is not necessary, take these steps: What to Do 9
  • 12. 10What to Do if You Get Stranded Cold-WeatherStaying in your vehicle when stranded is often the safestchoice if winter storms create poor visibility or if roadwaysare ice covered. These steps will increase your safety Health Emergencies Serious health problems can result from prolongedwhen stranded: exposure to the cold. The most common cold-related much more severe.• Tie a brightly colored cloth to the antenna problems are hypothermia and frostbite. medical assistance. Other heat-related problems can be as a signal to rescuers and raise the hood Treating heat rash is simple and usually does not require of the car (if it is not snowing). Hypothermia• Move anything you need from the trunk When exposed to cold temperatures, your body begins to and may make the condition worse. into the passenger area. lose heat faster than it can be produced. Prolonged exposure ointments or creams—they keep the skin warm and moist• Wrap your entire body, including your to cold will eventually use up your body’s stored energy. powder may be used to increase comfort, but avoid using head, in extra clothing, blankets, or newspapers. The result is hypothermia, or abnormally low body temper- humid environment. Keep the affected area dry. Dusting• Stay awake. You will be less vulnerable to ature. Body temperature that is too low affects the brain, The best treatment for heat rash is to provide a cooler, less cold-related health problems. making the victim unable to think clearly or move well. What to Do• Run the motor (and heater) for about 10 minutes per This makes hypothermia particularly dangerous because a hour, opening one window slightly to let in air. Make person may not know it is happening and won’t be able to groin, under the breasts, and in elbow creases. sure that snow is not blocking the exhaust pipe—this will do anything about it. It is more likely to occur on the neck and upper chest, in the reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Heat rash looks like a red cluster of pimples or small blisters.• As you sit, keep moving your arms and legs to improve Hypothermia is most likely at very cold temperatures, but Recognizing Heat Rash your circulation and stay warmer. it can occur even at cool temperatures (above 40°F) if a• Do not eat unmelted snow because it person becomes chilled from rain, sweat, or most common in young children. will lower your body temperature. submersion in cold water. during hot, humid weather. It can occur at any age but is Heat rash is a skin irritation caused by excessive sweating• Huddle with other people for warmth. Heat Rash10
  • 13. 11 Victims of hypothermia are often (1) elderly people with If medical care is not available, begin warming the inadequate food, clothing, or heating; (2) babies sleeping in person, as follows: cold bedrooms; (3) people who remain outdoors for long • Get the victim into a warm room or shelter. periods—the homeless, hikers, hunters, etc.; and (4) people • If the victim has on any wet clothing, remove it. remain safe and healthy. who drink alcohol or use illicit drugs. • Warm the center of the body first—chest, neck, head, in your fluid intake, activities, and clothing during hot weather can help you to and groin—using an electric blanket, if available. Or use Recognizing Hypothermia against heat-related illness is prevention. Staying cool and making simple changes skin-to-skin contact under loose, dry layers of blankets, Warnings signs of hypothermia: to recognize and respond promptly to warning signs of trouble. Your best defense clothing, towels, or sheets. These self-help measures are not a substitute for medical care but may help you Adults: Infants: • Warm beverages can help increase the body temperature, • shivering, exhaustion • bright red, cold skin but do not give alcoholic beverages. Do not try to give One Last Hot Tip… • confusion, fumbling hands • very low energy beverages to an unconscious person. • memory loss, slurred speech • After body temperature has increased, keep • drowsiness the person dry and wrapped in a warm What to Do blanket, including the head and neck. If you notice any of these signs, take the • Get medical attention as soon as possible. person’s temperature. If it is below 95°, A person with severe hypothermia may be unconscious and the situation is an emergency—get may not seem to have a pulse or to be breathing. In this medical attention immediately. case, handle the victim gently, and get emergency assistance immediately. Even if the victim appears dead, CPR should be provided. CPR should continue while the victim is being warmed, until the victim responds or medical aid becomes available. In some cases, hypothermia victims who appear to be dead can be successfully resuscitated. 11
  • 14. Frostbite What to Do These procedures are not substitutes for proper medicalFrostbite is an injury to the body that is caused by freezing. If you detect symptoms of frostbite, seek medical care. care. Hypothermia is a medical emergency and frostbiteFrostbite causes a loss of feeling and color in affected areas. Because frostbite and hypothermia both result from exposure, should be evaluated by a health care provider. It is a goodIt most often affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or first determine whether the victim also shows signs of idea to take a first aid and emergency resuscitation (CPR)toes. Frostbite can permanently damage the body, and hypothermia, as described previously. Hypothermia is a course to prepare for cold-weather health problems.severe cases can lead to amputation. The risk of frostbite is more serious medical condition and requires emergency Knowing what to do is an important part of protecting yourincreased in people with reduced blood circulation and medical assistance. health and the health of others.among people who are not dressed properly for extremely If (1) there is frostbite but no sign of hypothermia and (2)cold temperatures. immediate medical care is not available, proceed as follows:Recognizing Frostbite • Get into a warm room as soon as possible.At the first signs of redness or pain in any skin area, get out • Unless absolutely necessary, do not walk on frostbittenof the cold or protect any exposed skin—frostbite may be feet or toes—this increases the damage.beginning. Any of the following signs may indicate frostbite: • Immerse the affected area in warm—not hot—water• a white or grayish-yellow skin area (the temperature should be comfortable to the touch for unaffected parts of the body). One Last Cool Tip . . .• skin that feels unusually firm or waxy Taking preventive action is your best defense against having to deal with extreme • Or, warm the affected area using body heat. cold-weather conditions. By preparing your home and car in advance for winter• numbness For example, the heat of an armpit can be emergencies, and by observing safety precautions during times of extremely coldA victim is often unaware of frostbite until someone else used to warm frostbitten fingers. weather, you can reduce the risk of weather-related health problems.points it out because the frozen tissues are numb. • Do not rub the frostbitten area with snow or massage it at all. This can cause more damage. • Don’t use a heating pad, heat lamp, or the heat of a stove, fireplace, or radiator for warming. Affected areas are numb and can be easily burned.12 13
  • 15. Frostbite What to Do These procedures are not substitutes for proper medicalFrostbite is an injury to the body that is caused by freezing. If you detect symptoms of frostbite, seek medical care. care. Hypothermia is a medical emergency and frostbiteFrostbite causes a loss of feeling and color in affected areas. Because frostbite and hypothermia both result from exposure, should be evaluated by a health care provider. It is a goodIt most often affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or first determine whether the victim also shows signs of idea to take a first aid and emergency resuscitation (CPR)toes. Frostbite can permanently damage the body, and hypothermia, as described previously. Hypothermia is a course to prepare for cold-weather health problems.severe cases can lead to amputation. The risk of frostbite is more serious medical condition and requires emergency Knowing what to do is an important part of protecting yourincreased in people with reduced blood circulation and medical assistance. health and the health of others.among people who are not dressed properly for extremely If (1) there is frostbite but no sign of hypothermia and (2)cold temperatures. immediate medical care is not available, proceed as follows:Recognizing Frostbite • Get into a warm room as soon as possible.At the first signs of redness or pain in any skin area, get out • Unless absolutely necessary, do not walk on frostbittenof the cold or protect any exposed skin—frostbite may be feet or toes—this increases the damage.beginning. Any of the following signs may indicate frostbite: • Immerse the affected area in warm—not hot—water• a white or grayish-yellow skin area (the temperature should be comfortable to the touch for unaffected parts of the body). One Last Cool Tip . . .• skin that feels unusually firm or waxy Taking preventive action is your best defense against having to deal with extreme • Or, warm the affected area using body heat. cold-weather conditions. By preparing your home and car in advance for winter• numbness For example, the heat of an armpit can be emergencies, and by observing safety precautions during times of extremely coldA victim is often unaware of frostbite until someone else used to warm frostbitten fingers. weather, you can reduce the risk of weather-related health problems.points it out because the frozen tissues are numb. • Do not rub the frostbitten area with snow or massage it at all. This can cause more damage. • Don’t use a heating pad, heat lamp, or the heat of a stove, fireplace, or radiator for warming. Affected areas are numb and can be easily burned.12 13