SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Being prepared is your best defense against having to deal with health problems related to cold weather.

When heading out on a cold day like Friday, you have to make sure you are properly dressed for the weather. Wear several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing rather than one layer of heavy clothing.

Wear mittens, which are warmer than gloves, a hat, and a scarf. The areas that are most vulnerable include the face, especially your ears and nose, as well as your fingers and toes.

22News Spoke with Dr. Joseph Sills from Baystate Health Wing to learn more about protecting your body from the extreme cold. “Frostbite and hypothermia can happen quickly and this is especially true for babies children and the elderly because their bodies lose heat more easily.
Today is a good day to stay sheltered indoors.”

Hypothermia is caused by prolonged exposure to very cold temperatures and could be more detrimental if a person becomes chilled from rain, sweat, or submersion in cold water, and Frostbite causes a loss of feeling and color in the affected areas.

It doesn’t take long for the cold to do that damage, in just 10 minutes, your exposed skin can be frostbitten. So on a day like Friday, reduce your exposure to the elements by staying indoors.