Doctors warn of hypothermia risk in arctic blast - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Doctors warn of hypothermia risk in arctic blast

Posted: Updated:

As the region remains locked in a deep freeze, hypothermia is a growing concern.

Two people in the Midwest recently died.

Hospitals all over Northwest Ohio report there are no cases of people suffering from hypothermia in the emergency rooms, but doctors warn the bitter cold can be deadly. Hypothermia only takes minutes to shut down your body.

"I live on Catawba right on the water, my channel is frozen right now and it's beautiful," says Jean Dietz as she loads her grocery bags into her car in Port Clinton.

Dietz doesn't mind braving the bitterly cold air, but ER doctors say it could cause serious health problems.

"It's very deadly, especially if the temperatures in the body drop, you can actually die quite quickly from this," says Dr. Trent Peppard, an ER physician at Mercy Saint Vincent Medical Center.

Two people in the Midwest died from hypothermia and cold exposure over the weekend. One was a 70-year old man in Des Plaines, Illinois. The other was a 38-year old man in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Dr. Peppard says the people most at risk for hypothermia in the dangerously low temperatures are the homeless, people with psychiatric illnesses, the elderly, and alcoholics.

Dr. Peppard says alcohol makes you think you're warmer than you actually are.

"Alcohol has an effect on the mentation of the patient so they will be altered," says Dr. Peppard. "They won't be paying attention to the symptoms."

The doctor says it's best to stay inside where it's warm, but bundle up if you have to be outside. That message is especially important for runners.

"Basically when you're sweating you become damp and so you want to make sure that also when you're sweating you lose core temperature so stay dry and appropriate dress is the key," says Dr. Peppard.

"I wish I could run," says Dietz. "I used to walk all the time in the cold. It didn't bother me. It's just that my hip now does so I can't do it. I would if I could."

Doctors say children and the elderly are the most susceptible to hypothermia. People can get that from staying in the cold too long, falling into water, and inadequately heating your home.

Symptoms include shivering, slurred speech, confusion, and slow, heavy breathing.

If someone around you has these symptoms make sure to monitor their breathing, remove any wet clothes, cover the person with blankets, and give them warm beverages.

Also, doctors say you should not apply heat, such as hot water or a heating pad, directly to the skin.

  • LocalMore>>

  • Loved ones looking for answers in Toledo murder case

    Loved ones looking for answers in Toledo murder case

    Friday, July 25 2014 11:09 PM EDT2014-07-26 03:09:20 GMT
    Eddie Byrd started cutting Tyler McIntoush's hair when he was only 8-years-old. The Toledo barber was devastated to hear the carefree 16-year-old was shot and killed Thursday morning."They stole her son, my customer, and a friend," says Byrd. "We cant see him grow up can't see him graduate. It's just, emotions are messed up right now."According to police, the shooting happened near Collingwood and Boston Place just after 3 a.m. Today, a small memorial now sits near that spot. McIntosh's frien...
    Eddie Byrd started cutting Tyler McIntoush's hair when he was only 8-years-old. The Toledo barber was devastated to hear the carefree 16-year-old was shot and killed Thursday morning."They stole her son, my customer, and a friend," says Byrd. "We cant see him grow up can't see him graduate. It's just, emotions are messed up right now."According to police, the shooting happened near Collingwood and Boston Place just after 3 a.m. Today, a small memorial now sits near that spot. McIntosh's frien...
  • Riverdale teacher accused of child endangering resigns from district

    Riverdale teacher accused of child endangering resigns from district

    Friday, July 25 2014 10:04 PM EDT2014-07-26 02:04:52 GMT
    The Riverdale School teacher caught on camera being physical with a student has resigned. Superintendent Eric Hoffman tells 13abc he received Barb Williams’ resignation letter Friday. Hoffman will not release the letter at this time. He tells 13abc he will give the letter to the school board Monday at its meeting where the board is expected to formally act on the resignation. Hoffman would only say the letter says she will resign immediately.
    The Riverdale School teacher caught on camera being physical with a student has resigned. Superintendent Eric Hoffman tells 13abc he received Barb Williams’ resignation letter Friday. Hoffman will not release the letter at this time. He tells 13abc he will give the letter to the school board Monday at its meeting where the board is expected to formally act on the resignation. Hoffman would only say the letter says she will resign immediately.
  • Springfield Twp. tries donating old dump to Habitat for Humanity

    Springfield Twp. tries donating old dump to Habitat for Humanity

    Friday, July 25 2014 6:04 PM EDT2014-07-25 22:04:49 GMT
    The 13abc I-Team investigated the property and uncovered it was the focus of a lawsuit and there are still Ohio EPA restrictions. 
    The 13abc I-Team investigated the property and uncovered it was the focus of a lawsuit and there are still Ohio EPA restrictions. 

  • Top StoriesMore>>

  • Loved ones looking for answers in Toledo murder case

    Loved ones looking for answers in Toledo murder case

    Friday, July 25 2014 11:09 PM EDT2014-07-26 03:09:20 GMT
    Eddie Byrd started cutting Tyler McIntoush's hair when he was only 8-years-old. The Toledo barber was devastated to hear the carefree 16-year-old was shot and killed Thursday morning."They stole her son, my customer, and a friend," says Byrd. "We cant see him grow up can't see him graduate. It's just, emotions are messed up right now."According to police, the shooting happened near Collingwood and Boston Place just after 3 a.m. Today, a small memorial now sits near that spot. McIntosh's frien...
    Eddie Byrd started cutting Tyler McIntoush's hair when he was only 8-years-old. The Toledo barber was devastated to hear the carefree 16-year-old was shot and killed Thursday morning."They stole her son, my customer, and a friend," says Byrd. "We cant see him grow up can't see him graduate. It's just, emotions are messed up right now."According to police, the shooting happened near Collingwood and Boston Place just after 3 a.m. Today, a small memorial now sits near that spot. McIntosh's frien...
  • This is Home! - July 25, 2014

    This is Home! - July 25, 2014

     

  • Riverdale teacher accused of child endangering resigns from district

    Riverdale teacher accused of child endangering resigns from district

    Friday, July 25 2014 10:04 PM EDT2014-07-26 02:04:52 GMT
    The Riverdale School teacher caught on camera being physical with a student has resigned. Superintendent Eric Hoffman tells 13abc he received Barb Williams’ resignation letter Friday. Hoffman will not release the letter at this time. He tells 13abc he will give the letter to the school board Monday at its meeting where the board is expected to formally act on the resignation. Hoffman would only say the letter says she will resign immediately.
    The Riverdale School teacher caught on camera being physical with a student has resigned. Superintendent Eric Hoffman tells 13abc he received Barb Williams’ resignation letter Friday. Hoffman will not release the letter at this time. He tells 13abc he will give the letter to the school board Monday at its meeting where the board is expected to formally act on the resignation. Hoffman would only say the letter says she will resign immediately.

Area Events Calendar

See It, Shoot It, Send It!