Patient Education

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Wear Proper Clothing to Prevent Cold Injury

Topic Overview

To prevent getting too cold, wear proper clothing and shoes, such as:

  • A hat and face mask. Up to 80% of total body heat loss is from your head and neck areas.
  • Layers of clothing to keep you warm and dry.
  • Clothing made of wool, polypropylene, down, or Thinsulate. These are good insulators and will prevent loss of body heat even when the fabric gets wet.
  • Wind- and waterproof outer layers to keep you dry.
  • Wool socks and waterproof boots that fit well. Socks, boots, and shoes must fit closely but not be tight or have any pressure areas. Smooth out all wrinkles in your socks when you put them on.
  • Mittens rather than gloves so your fingers are together and can be rolled into a fist.

Credits

Current as of: June 26, 2019

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine