Hypothermia

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Hypothermia

Hypothermia occurs as a result of prolonged exposure to cold. It develops when the body temperature falls below 35ºC / 95º F and in such a condition more heat is lost than the body’s ability to generate.

Symptoms

  • Shivering
  • Cold, dry skin
  • Numbness
  • Loss of sensation
  • Muscular weakness
  • Slow and shallow breathing
  • Lethargy
  • Confusion
  • In extreme cases, cardiac arrest
  • Slow weakening pulse

First Aid

  • Make the victim lie down comfortably and cover him / her with warm dry blanket / quilt etc.
  • Cover the head and neck of the victim to provide warmth.
  • If the victim is conscious, give a hot beverage or soup.
  • If the victim is unconscious, check the airway, pulse and breathing. If necessary, give CPR.
  • If the victim is an infant or an elderly, get medical help.

CAUTIONS:

  • Do not use direct heat like hot water bottles or heating pad to provide warmth because this is believed to further worsen hypothermia.