Hypothermia can occur
at temperatures as high as the 40s if a person is wet or gets chilled.
Marylanders are encouraged to prepare for cold weather prior to the next
temperature drop. Health and Mental Hygiene offers helpful information and cold
weather facts through the tip sheet found
here, and on our extreme cold
Here are some basic
tips to keep you safe in cold weather:
properly for the weather. Make sure to wear a water-resistant coat and boots, and several layers of loose-fitting clothing. Wear a hat - you can lose as much as 50 percent of your body heat through
your head. Don't forget mittens or gloves, heavy socks, and a scarf!
2. Hypothermia occurs when the body
below 95oF. Keep
an eye out for symptoms, which include shivering, exhaustion, confusion,
fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech, or drowsiness. If you notice any
of these symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.
3. Frostbite is the actual freezing of body tissue
and can occur when the skin temperature falls below 32oF. Prevent frostbite by covering your
toes, fingers, ears, cheeks, and nose, which are the most likely areas to
freeze. Look out for redness or pain, white or grayish-yellow skin, skin that
feels firm or waxy, and numbness. If you notice any of these symptoms, seek
medical attention immediately.
4. When heating your house against the cold
temperatures, beware of carbon monoxide
poisoning. Generators, small gasoline engines, stoves, lanterns and gas
ranges, or burning charcoal and wood can all create high carbon monoxide levels
inside your home. The colorless,
odorless gas can cause severe illness and death. Make sure your house has
proper ventilation and keep running generators at least 25 feet from your home.
5. Review your emergency plan with your family. Know where to go and how to
contact others in case of emergency or evacuation. Have an emergency supply kit at home and in your vehicle that contains non-perishable
food, water, medical supplies and batteries. Vehicle kits should also include
heavy blankets and a snow shovel.
201 W. Preston Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-2399
(410) 767-6500 or 1-877-463-3464