• News and Resources – Frostbite and Hypothermia

  • Frostbite

    Treat Minor Frostbite

    • Move the person indoors
    • Remove tight clothing and jewelry
    • Place dry, sterile gauze between fingers and toes

    If you are more than an hour away from a hospital, place the frostbitten area in warm water. Rewarming usually takes 20 to 45 minutes.

    Deep frostbite usually affects the feet or hands and is characterized by waxy, pale, solid skin. Blisters may appear. Treat deep frostbite by moving the victim indoors and immediately seek medical attention.

  • ​Frostbite is the most common injury resulting from exposure to severe cold. White, waxy or grayish-yellow patches on the affected areas characterize superficial frostbite. The skin feels cold and numb. The skin surface feels stiff but underlying tissue feels soft and pliable when depressed.

  • Hypothermia

    Hypothermia occurs when the body's temperature drops below 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

    Symptoms of Hypothermia include:

    • Changes in mental state
    • Uncontrollable shivering
    • Cool stomach
    • Low body temperature

    Severe hypothermia may produce rigid muscles, dark and puffy skin, irregular heart and respiratory rates, and unconsciousness.

    Treat Hypothermia

    • Call for medical attention
    • Get victim out of the cold
    • Cover the victim's head
    • Insulate the victim with blankets, pillows, towels, newspapers, etc.
    • Handle the victim gently
    • Begin CPR if necessary

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