Winter is here, and many natural challenges, to keep one safe, come with the season. Here are tips, to help make this winter a safe winter wonderland, for you and your family.

Keep your body warm

  • Eat well balanced meals
  • Don’t drink alcohol or caffeinated beverages – These will cause your body to lose heat more rapidly
  • Wear a hat, scarf, and several layers of warm clothing
  • Wear water resistant boots and coats
  • Use gloves and mittens (mittens are warmer than gloves)
  • Outer clothing should be made of closely knit materials or wind resistant
  • Cold weather will cause extra strain on the heart. Consult with your doctor if suffering from high blood pressure or heart disease.
  • Work slowly in cold weather, the body is already working to stay warm
  • Remember to consider wind chill
  • Avoid walking on ice; many people are injured each winter because they slipped on ice
  • Make sure family or friends know where you are during winter activities such as: skiing, snowboarding, hiking, camping or working

Prepare your car for winter travel:

  • Check antifreeze level or consider having radiator system serviced
  • Replace windshield-wiper fluid with a winter mixture
  • Replace worn-out wiper blades to increase visibility
  • Replace worn tires
  • Check air pressure in tires
  • Keep gas tank near full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines
  • Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle

Winter safety for your car is not only having the items you might need in an emergency, but also about driving defensively to avoid sliding off the road or running into other vehicles. Here are some good safety tips:

  • Slow down in foggy or other conditions that could cause poor visibility
  • Reduce speed on icy, muddy or wet roads
  • Give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination
  • Be alert for animals crossing roads

 Another important consideration is knowing how to recognize and treat frostbite. Frostbite is the freezing of the tissue or body part. Frostbite occurs when ice crystals form inside the skin, which can destroy the tissues, causing you to lose the skin or part of a finger, toe, etc. It most often effects toes, but can also affect the ears, nose, and fingers.

Frostbite symptoms include sSkin that is white and has a “wooden” feel all the way through as well as numbness.

Treatment for frostbite:

  • Move person to warm area.
  • Put effected body part in warm water (105 – 110 degrees F) until skin becomes flushed.
  • Don’t use hotter water or additional damage maybe caused.
  • Separate injured fingers or toes with sterile gauze to prevent sticking together
  • If normal sensation doesn’t return within thirty minutes, seek medical attention immediately