Winter’s coming…are you prepared??
So many of us live in states where we’re subject to the harsh elements of mother winter. Snow, freezing rain, high winds, and sub-zero temperatures. Combined, these winter elements can be a deadly recipe for anyone who isn’t prepared.
What can you do to ensure you stay cozy, warm, and safe this winter? Here’s our guide:
Dress In Layers
During the winter months, it’s imperative to dress in layers and bring layers with you. Layers between clothing create pockets of air that act as insulation and keeps sweat from sticking to your body. You should dress in layers for your upper and lower body!
Here are the three key layers that you should always have:
- Baselayer – This layer should stick tightly to your body. Think thermals and long underwear. It should be comfortable as well as breathable so as to stay dry.
- Midlayer – This layer includes items such as fleece or synthetic sweatshirt. On super cold days, you should opt for down insulation that is not breathable.
- Outerlayer – This layer provides you with wind and water protection only. In a pinch, you can use plastic.
Clothing Should Be Loose
The clothing that you wear should not restrict your circulation. Appendages that lose circulation become colder much quicker! And remember, pockets of air acts as insulation so keep it loose, loose, loose!
Avoid Cotton At All Cost
Clothing such as jeans and T-shirts are typically made of cotton. Cotton has a nasty habit of getting wet, staying wet, and overall providing very little insulation. Instead, stick to wool or synthetics.
Frostbite typically begins as lethargy in your joints, pain, and numbness. If you notice color changes in your limbs, that’s usually a bad sign as it can indicate tissue damage. Once this occurs, you need to get out of the cold immediately or risk permanent loss of tissue and limbs.
The treatment of frostbite is to get simply out of the cold and wait. Rubbing your skin can cause even more damage and running your tissues under hot water can cause burns.
Hypothermia usually occurs without the presence of snow or frost. Cold water and rain are your enemies here as they can be just as deadly.
Common symptoms of hypothermia include: shivering, teeth chattering, feeling sluggish and slow, difficulty thinking, feelings of tiredness, or a sudden feeling of warmth after being exposed to cold water for a period.
To treat the early onset of hypothermia, get out of the cold as soon as you can. If you cannot get out of the cold, attempt to get dry and remove yourself from any wind and elements. Candles in small shelters can provide some warmth.
* An easy tip to check for the early onset of frostbite or hypothermia is to touch your thumb tip to your pinky tip on one hand. If you struggle, it’s a sign that you are suffering from the onset of these deadly effects.