The Cold, Hard Truth About Surviving Bitter Winter Weather

Doctors offer practical advice for dealing with record-breaking temperatures

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Cindy Lord is director of the physician assistant program at the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Conn. She likes to use the acronym C.O.L.D. when advising people on dealing with the cold.

  • Cover up: Wear a hat or other protective covering to prevent body heat loss from your head, face and neck.
  • Overexertion: Avoid activities that cause you to sweat a lot. This can cause you to lose body heat more quickly.
  • Layers: Dress in layers. Wear loose-fitting, layered, lightweight clothing. Wool, silk or polypropylene inner layers hold body heat better than cotton.
  • Dry: Stay as dry as possible. Get out of wet clothing as soon as possible. Keep your hands and feet dry.

More information

For more on protecting yourself in the cold, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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