Winter Storm Survival Tips

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Superficial frostbite: Numbness, tingling, burning, itching. The skin looks frozen white and retains firmness when pressed.

Deep frostbite: Increased and eventual loss of sensation, swelling, blood blisters. The skin is yellowish and hard and can appear blackened and dead.

To treat frostbite:

Get to a hospital as soon as possible

Move to a warm area as soon as possible

Elevate the affected area

Remove any restricted clothing or jewelry

Get to keep from further inhibiting the flow of blood.

If immediate hospital care is impossible,warm the area quickly in water between 104-107 degrees Fahrenheit (40-42 degrees Celsius)

Learn How To Recognize Hypothermia

Developing hypothermia is a very likely during a winter storm. real possibility. This condition occurs when your body temperature drops below what is necessary for normal metabolism and body functions.

Hypothermia symptoms include:

  • Slurred speech
  • Stiff joints
  • Loss of coordination
  • Slow pulse
  • Uncontrollable shivering
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Puffy face
  • Mental confusion

If you suspect that you or a loved one is suffering from hypothermia, it’s important to get warm as quickly as possible. Use blankets, sleeping bags, layers of clothing, etc. If someone is with them, snuggle closely to take advantage of their body heat. Just as importantly, get to a hospital for treatment as soon as you can.

If You Must Go Outside…

The absolute best strategy during a winter storm? Stay indoors. But if you need to be outside, you must dress appropriately to avoid sucuumbing to the above medical conditions. In addition to warm weather gear, you should also wear loose, layered clothing underneath.

Also, since snowstorm conditions are usually accompanied by limited visibility, it’s important that a few of those outer layers be a bright color so you can better be seen by others.

Additional tips:

  • Make sure someone knows where you’re going
  • Bring a cell phone with you
  • Try to avoid walking too close to the edge of a road (in case cars slide off the road)
  • Bring a small bottle of water and a portable snack, like a granola bar

If you find you can’t reach your destination or you get lost or stuck, try to take shelter inside a building or get behind something large as soon as you can.

Shovel Safely

Did you know tha people die every year from heart attacks while shoveling snow?

  • If you’re not in shape, but need to clear your driveway, get help from a young neighbor
  • Take your time shoveling – go slow, and take breaks
  • Shovel as soon as possible to avoid having to deal with a huge pile of snow
  • If not, go slow and steady, taking breaks as often as you need.

Stay Positive

A positive outlook can help improve even the worst situations. While you’re stocking up on food, water, etc., make sure to also include a few books, board games and a pack of cards. Have a notebook, coloring books, pens and crayons available. Look at family albums and make plans for the future. Engage in positive and healthy activities to help you take your mind off the weather and make the best of the situation.

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Originally seen on http://blackdoctor.org/

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