From the Nurse

November Health News

Do you know the difference between frost nip and frost bite?

 

Signs and symptoms of frostbite include the following per the Mayo Clinic:

*At first, cold skin and a prickling feeling
*Numbness
*Red, white, bluish-white or grayish-yellow skin
* Hard or waxy-looking skin
*Clumsiness due to joint and muscle stiffness
*Blistering after rewarming, in severe cases

 

Frostbite is most common on the fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. Because of skin numbness, you may not realize you have frostbite until someone else points it out.

 

Frostbite occurs in several stages, here are the first two:

 

The first stage of frostbite is frostnip. Frostnip is a mild form of frostbite, your skin pales or turns red and feels very cold. Continued exposure leads to prickling and numbness in the affected area. As your skin warms, you may feel pain and tingling. Frostnip doesn't permanently damage the skin.

 

The second stage of frostbite appears as reddened skin that turns white or pale. The skin may remain soft, but some ice crystals may form in the tissue. Your skin may begin to feel warm — a sign of serious skin involvement. If you treat frostbite with rewarming at this stage, the surface of your skin may appear mottled, blue or purple. And you may notice stinging, burning and swelling. A fluid-filled blister may appear 24 to 36 hours after rewarming the skin.

 

Prevention: Dress for the weather, hats, gloves face masks, snow suits. Even a thin layer of vaseline on the cheeks, nose and ear lobs can help protect the skin from cold weather skin damage.

 

Suggested health related movie to for the whole family is called Forks over Knives. Can be found on Netlex & VUDU. My teenagers and 7 year old found the movie worth while and intently watched the whole movie.