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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

This Woman Has Frostbite -- How to Recognize the Signs and Treat Frostbite

Frostbite has been a real concern to people this year in areas that have been affected by below freezing temperatures. But many people don't recognize the warning signs until it's too late. This can result in severe injury to body parts and even amputation if not treated immediately.

What is frostbite?

Frostbite is when body parts are exposed to below freezing temperatures causing them to become dehydrated and frozen. Eventually the tissue will die. Frostbite commonly affects areas such as the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes.

How do you know when you're getting frostbite?

The first warning signs are redness and pain. Eventually the area may feel numb, and the skin can turn a white or grayish-yellow color. The skin can appear shiny, swollen and even blister.

How do you treat frostbite?

Frostbite can permanently damage skin, nerves and underlying tissue, so it is important to react quickly. It is important to warm the affected areas immediately, using your own body heat. The armpit can be used to warm frostbit fingers. Or the fingers and toes can be wrapped lightly in a warm blanket. Do not try to walk on frostbitten toes as it will cause more injury. Also, do not use a heating pad or any other heating device. The fingers and toes will most likely be numb and cannot feel the heat, which can cause burning.

The best way to prevent frostbite is to protect all areas of the body when going out into sub-freezing temperatures. Be sure to protect your face, ears, toes and fingers with layers of warm clothing. The extra layers will help prevent the cold from reaching exposed parts.
DISCLAIMER: The content or opinions expressed on this web site are not to be interpreted as medical advice. Please consult with your doctor or medical practictioner before utilizing any suggestions on this web site.