LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – As temperatures plummet, health officials are warning the public about frostbite. When digits dip, fingers, ears, toes, and your nose are most at risk.
Frostbite is a serious condition causing numbness, permanent nerve damage, and even amputation. It only takes a matter of minutes to get frostbite when the wind chill is -15 degrees or lower.
At that point, doctors recommend staying indoors. However, if you’re outside, they say to dress properly. That means wearing a hat, gloves, and layers of clothing. Also, make sure your scarf is covering your face, and your shoes and coat are water-resistant.
While outdoors, if you start to feel numb or get cold, it is best to slowly warm up inside with a warm bath.
“It should be warm and not hot. Hot water when there is no circulation or nerve sensation can actually burn the skin on top of a frostbite,” said Dr. Donald Ford from the Cleveland Clinic.
Once inside and re-heated, your best bet is to just wait and see. Dr. Hood says it’s a good sign if the sensation is back and the skin looks normal in a day or two.