Stay dry, cheat death in style

Senia Hiltunen

Senia HiltunenFashion Columnist

With the below freezing temperatures outside in full force, all you fashionistas might be putting yourself at risk for frostbite or hypothermia.

The professional medics at American Medical Response (AMR) would like to remind everyone- especially the elderly, small children, chronically ill, substance abusers and individuals who stay out in the cold for long periods- to bundle up.

Here are some fashionable ways to keep warm without losing your life (or a limb).

Dress in layers.

Dressing yourself in layers will keep you warmer than one big layer will, not to mention layers are always “in” for cold weather months. Put a thinner undershirt on first then layer that with a chunky knit or wool top for added warmth. You will look fabulous and be comfortably warm!

Wear a great coat.

When outside, always wear a coat. The coat should be rain/snow resistant and have zippers to help you vent off some heat if you get too hot. Columbia’s are great winter coats that come in various colors and patterns, so you can look cute and stay dry if you happen to be involved in a random snowball fight.

Wear a hat and mittens.

Forty percent of body heat escapes through the head, so wear a cute ski hat with pom pom’s and earflaps. AMR has confirmed that mittens are warmer than gloves, so wear those cute mittens with peek-a-boo fingers for warmth and flexibility for texting.

Hypothermia comes in stages starting with shivering and followed by numbness, confusion, drowsiness, and eventually unconsciousness. If emergency help is not provided after the victim goes unconscious, death will soon follow.

Initial treatment of hypothermia includes: getting out of the cold, shed any wet clothes, wrap up in warm blankets, and drink a warm, non-alcoholic drink like hot cocoa or warm apple cider.

Once the victim is warm, first aid can be taken on the frostbitten areas. The steps included: remove the person from the cold, handle the frostbitten area gently, and wrap it in a dry sterile bandage. Do not rub the frostbitten area, and do not let the injured person use the frostbitten area (e.g. like walking on frostbitten toes).

Frostbite most commonly affects the fingers, toes, ears, and nose. Signs are a hard, waxy feeling in the appendages and possible discoloration.

Re-warm the frostbitten area only if medical care is delayed or unavailable. Keep the area warm afterwards to keep from re-freezing.

If you or one of your friends experiences symptoms of hypothermia or frostbite, call for help immediately. You can call the University Police Department at SDSU (605) 688-5117 or Brookings Police Department via 911.

Remember to stay warm out there, and always take precautions when having a good time playing around in beautiful snow! Stay fashionable and warm my friends!