What is Hypothermia? - Home

What is Hypothermia?

Date: December 15, 2016

What is Hypothermia ?

Hypothermia is a potentially dangerous drop in body temperature, usually caused by prolonged exposure to cold temperatures. The risk of cold exposure increases as the winter months arrive, but you can be at risk if you're exposed to cold temperatures while hiking or out on the ocean, even in the warmer time of year.  Normal body temperature averages 98.6 degrees. With hypothermia, core temperature drops below 95 degrees. In severe hypothermia, core body temperature can drop to 82 degrees or lower.

 

Symptoms of Hypothermia:

Signs and symptoms of mild hypothermia include:

  • Shivering
  • Dizziness
  • Hunger
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Faster than usual breathing
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Gradual confusion
  • Lack of coordination
  • Increase in heart rate

Signs and symptoms of moderate to severe hypothermia include:

  • Shivering   (*shivering may slow as hypothermia worsens)
  • Slurred speech
  • Confusion
  • Drowsiness
  • Lack of coordination
  • Progressive loss of consciousness
  • Weak pulse
  • Shallow breathing

Signs of hypothermia in an infant include:

  • Very cold skin
  • Bright red skin coloring
  • Very low energy
  • Weak cry

 

See link below for more information on Hypothermia:

https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/staysafe/hypothermia.html

https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/index.html

http://www.state.nj.us/emergency/general/wsfacts.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/faq.html

If emergency services are needed, call 911