Preventing hypothermia during this bitter cold blast

Extremely cold temperatures have arrived in our area. It's not just uncomfortable - frigid temperatures can be dangerous.

Frostbite can set it in less than 30 minutes if your skin is exposed. Hypothermia is also a risk if someone isn't prepared for the cold and especially if someone is wet.

Early signs typically start with someone jumping around or trying to move to warm up.

"They're shivering, they may be stomping their feet and moving around a lot, but that's usually followed by what we call a slowing phase, when they start to get lethargic, maybe slurred speech, they start to have a little trouble walking," said Dr. Tom Waters from the Cleveland Clinic.

Those are signs the body temperature is dropping. You want to get them inside somewhere warm and call for medical help.

The most at risk are infants and the elderly.

Of course, the best defense is being prepared. If you're going outside in the extreme cold temperatures, you want to dress is layers.

Also, make sure you are staying warm and dry, cover as much skin as possible, and limit your time outside.

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