Guest Author - Sharon Bejin
You know it is going to be a long winter when nearing the end of October and you already are in fear of the frigid cold weather coming your way. For those who live in the Great Lakes region there are some precautions that will keep you safe during the winter months.
Dress smart. Sure we all know that hats can mess up your hair, flatten it and cause static, but the warmth your body will retain by keeping your head covered is something to consider. Keep your entire body protected from frostbite and hypothermia.
Frostbite can do permanent damage to your skin. It doesnít take long for your fingers, toes, nose, and earlobes to suffer severe damage in frigid weather. Wearing warm mittens or gloves and a hat during the winter will prevent frostbite. Symptoms of frostbite are numbness, discoloration, and a burning sensation.
Hypothermia is another condition to watch out for. If you are exposed to cold weather for a long period of time your body temperature may drop too low. This can lead to hypothermia. Symptoms of hypothermia include unstoppable shivering and drowsiness. Confusion may also set in during this time. Elderly people and small children are more susceptible to hypothermia. If you need to help someone who has hypothermia, help get them out of their wet clothes and keep them warm with blankets.
Watch your pets during the cold weather and remember to protect them. Just because they have fur doesnít mean that they are safe from the cold weather exposure. When you put your dog outside, do not leave them outside for long periods of time. Remove snow clumps from your petís paws to avoid discomfort. Not only can the snow pull tight on the fur, but it can also cause frostbite on the limbs. The pads can also become dry and cracked from walking on salt that has been tossed on icy sidewalks. Putting small boots on them will protect their pads.
When you go outside this winter, whether it be for work, a short run to the store, or taking in the winter activities, dress smart and stay safe. And don't forget your pets!