Caring for Frostbite

Caring for Frostbite

Winter can be tough on the all body parts. Cold and moisture can be particularly hard on the feet. Everyone should be aware how feet can be affected by the cold. Even being outside in the cold can put someone at risk from serious damage to their extremities. One of the biggest dangers to people’s feet is frostbite. Frostbite is the literal freezing of a body part. When it’s very cold outside, it’s possible to get frostbite on a body part in less than ten minutes. This is why it is important to know the symptoms of frostbite before they begin. It’s also important to know to care for frostbite when it happens. Recognition of symptoms is crucial in order to help prevent further damage.

 

First Steps

The first thing to do is determine if there’s evidence of frostbite. For example, the skin may be red. It may also be painful. This is known as frostnip and it is an early sign that something that has gone wrong. The skin looks very pale or yellow in color. People who have frostbite may feel a sense that something is wrong. If there’s evidence of a problem, it’s best to get inside as soon as possible. If this cannot be done, the part of the body with the frostbite should be heavily protected from the cold. For example, it’s a good idea to put socks on a foot that has frostbite. It’s also a good idea to head inside as soon as there is any evidence of any kind of damage to the feet or other body parts.

 

Once Inside

After getting inside or covering up the body part that has the frostbite, it’s best to make sure the treat this part to help prevent any further damage. The first thing to do when you’re inside is to avoid using the body part in a anyway. If the foot has been affected, keep all weight off of it. This is when it’s a good time to start the rewarming process. All wet clothes should be removed immediately. Soak the affected areas in warm water that is not too hot. Keep the body part in the water for at least fifteen minutes. This will allow blood circulation to return to that area gradually.

 

Further Care

If there’s any evidence of further damage, you may need to seek medical attention. Signs of further problems can be that there are any blisters on the feet or other areas of the body. If there’s soreness that does not go away when the skin is warmed, this can also indicate that further medical attention may be necessary. Numbness and any pain on the feet can also indicate that the person needs to have care from a medical professional. It’s very important to keep a close eye on the body part and see if it is functional again as any treatment proceeds. Medical attention can prevent any long-term damage to the body part.