Keep Your Children Safe From Frostbite this Winter
During the Winter there are specific health risks to consider especially if you have children. While many people may not think about frostbite on an everyday basis, mostly relegating it to the realm of being in the wilderness or other types of extreme areas. The truth is frostbite can occur anywhere it is cold, including when children are playing in the snow during winter. Each year memorial urgent care centers treat frostbite cases that could have been easily avoid. This why it is important to recognize the signs of frostbite early. The best treatment for frostbite is early prevention.
Knowing the Early Stages of Frostbite
According to doctors at memorial urgent care the beat way to prevent frostbite is by knowing the difference between being cold and going through the early stages of frostbite. Because of Hollywood and entertainment media, people assume that frostbite automatically makes your outer extremities, your fingers and toes black. The truth is that there are warning signs before the more severe stages set in. Frostbite occurs when the body attempts to retain its core body heat by taking away blood flow from the outer extremities. If the process continues, unheeded, the body will eventually completely cut of circulation to the outer extremities, resulting in those areas dying from lack of circulation, resulting in the popular idea of toes and fingers going black. One of the tell tale signs is that your fingers will begin to look red, blue and white this is a sign of frostbite taking hold.
Fingers and Toes Are not the Only Areas Effected by Frostbite
While fingers and toes are common associated with frostbite, memorial urgent care doctors say that the most common areas for frostbite are actually the chin nose and cheeks, because these are usually the most exposed areas of the body during cold weather. One complication when it comes to noticing the signs of frostbite is that the affected areas often become numb or begin tingling due to the nerves become damaged, this is one reason that people may not even know that they are getting frostbite. If you begin to notice these symptoms it is important to warm up immediately.
Prevention is the Best Treatment for Frostbite
Doctors say that once the a patient has severe enough frostbite there isn’t much that can be done. It is important to seek emergency medical attention if you suspect frostbite, but in the way of treatment, the best treatment is really prevention, which is why it is important to respect the weather and dress appropriately. We have all probably seen young adults going out on winter weekends not wearing coats, hats and gloves, for the sake of fashion, but what you usually don’t see are those same people in emergency rooms at the end of the evening. Cold weather, inadequate clothing and alcohol are a perfect combination for frostbite during the winter. When the body is inebriated it is not as able to notice the signs of frostbite, while it is a common misconception that alcohol has a warming effect the opposite is more true. Alcohol effects the bodies circulation while at the same time numbing important pain sensations that let us know when the body id being damaged. Another external factor that can contribute to frostbite is smoking. Smoking decreases blood circulation by constricting blood vessels, which makes it easier for the body to succumb to frostbite.
Protecting Small Children from Frostbite
According to memorial urgent care doctors, another key demographic to be concerned for in the winter are children. While it is a highlight of childhood to enjoy the snow, making snow angels, snow man and throwing snow balls; it is important to monitor their outside time in order to prevent them from experiencing frostbite. Because children are smaller the cold air effects them more than adults. It does not take long for a child that is handling and playing in the wet snow to become susceptible to the early signs of frostbite. If you child is in the snow, make sure to bring them in at regular intervals to warm up. Before letting them go out to play again, check them for the tell tale signs of frostbite.