As the Thermometer Dips, DHHS Offers Cold Weather Tips

Concord, NH: Last month’s January thaw is now just a distant memory, and cold arctic air has settled into New Hampshire. To help residents prepare for any extended periods of cold weather, the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) offers tips to stay healthy and safe.

“Many New Hampshire residents look forward to winter so they can get outside and enjoy skiing and snowmobiling, but when the temperature drops well below normal staying warm can be challenging,” stated DHHS Commissioner Nicholas Toumpas. “Taking some preventative steps will ensure you and your loved ones safety during the winter months.”

“Prolonged exposure to cold temperatures has the potential to cause serious or life-threatening health problems,” said DHHS Public Health Director MaryAnn Cooney. “The most common cold weather problems are hypothermia and frostbite. The elderly and infants are most at risk, but extreme cold can affect anyone,” cautioned Cooney.

DHHS offers the following tips to help prevent serious illness or injury from the cold.

Avoid staying outside unprotected for extended periods of time during extreme cold. If possible avoid going out during the coldest part of the day.

Dress in layers so you can adjust for various conditions.

Wear warm clothing, including hats, mittens, jackets and insulated

Stay hydrated.

Get out of wet clothes immediately.

Watch for signs of hypothermia: confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and
severe shivering.

Recognize warning signs of frostbite: gray, white or yellow skin
discoloration, numbness, and waxy feeling skin.

If you recognize any symptoms of hypothermia or frostbite in you or someone
else, immediately seek medical attention.