As the month of December approaches so does the risk of both frostbite and hypothermia. Frostbite occurs when your skin is exposed to temperatures below freezing. It begins on the superficial level and goes deeper into your skin until it reaches bones and tendons. Hypothermia occurs when your body becomes too cold and your brain and heart are not able to function at full capacity. The decreased temperatures statistically seen during this month of the year make it important for you to prepare and protect yourself and your family from cold.
Protect Your Head From The Cold
One of the best ways to avoid both hypothermia and frostbite is to protect your head from the cold. Your head is a location on your body where a lot of heat can escape, and it is also where your brain is housed. Because of this, it is crucial that you protect your head the best that you can. This can generally be done with either a hat, a beanie, a hooded sweatshirt or coat. Also, if you plan on being out in the cold for an extended period of time, you may want to cover your face and your neck by using some kind of face mask and scarf.
Another great way to protect yourself is to dress in layers. By wearing layers, you can stay warm in the morning and remove the layers as the day goes on. This is also true if you are outside doing an activity and warm up as you move around more. These layers can include things like thin gloves underneath thicker gloves, a long sleeve shirt, sweater, jacket, and coat, leggings under your pants, thin socks under thicker socks, etc.
Fuel Properly Before And During Outdoor Excursions
If you plan on doing something outside on a day that the temperature will be below freezing, you want to make sure that you fuel property both before and during the excursion. Eat foods that are rich in nutrients, and contain fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. These nutrients will give you the energy that you need to fuel your body in the cold, and eating during the excursion will also help to keep your body temperature up. Eating foods that are hot, such as soups, coffee, hot chocolate, etc., can also help to heat up your body even more.
December brings with it the bitter cold, but if you are prepared, you shouldn’t fear.
Hudson Physicians wishes you a fun and safe winter season.