Cold temperatures put people at risk for frostbite

Mullens, W.Va. (WVNS) - Freezing temperatures across the region have created for a dangerous environment outside. 

With temperatures in the single digits, people are now at risk for frostbite and hypothermia.

People who were outside in the cold in Wyoming County on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 described it as miserable. "It's just plain cold," one resident living in Garwood, Wyoming County, Butch Hunter said.

Some residents explained getting out of the house has been a struggle as everything was frozen. "My doors was froze up," Hunter added.

With temperatures below 28 degrees, paramedics said in less then 30 minutes any exposed skin can be susceptible to frostbite.

That leaves people thinking, what is someone with frostbite supposed to do while they wait for a medic to arrive? 

Residents in Wyoming County all had different ideas on what someone should do. One resident said, "hot water and get under the cover," while someone else added, "put cool water on your fingers and then massage them."

Meanwhile Leslie Cooper who lives in Barkers Ridge said differently adding, "I'd just try to get warm, get everything circulating."

Paramedics with STAT EMS in Pineville said the correct answer is just to warm up. Medics explained putting hot or cold water on frostbite can actually cause more damage. "You want to warm up, but you don't want to over warm, so you don't want to stick your hands or body in scolding hot water because that can cause damage," an Advanced Care Technician, Jonathan Creong said.

Cresong also explained there are a lot of ways to prevent against frostbite. The biggest one is staying out of the cold and inside if you can. Not everyone is able to do that, so he added for those going outside you want to warm up with layers. Cresong said the best kind of layers to wear are loose ones, that way your body heat can circulate. 
 


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