Q. Can you please give me some tips on how I would recog­nise and treat hy­pother­mia?

The People's Friend - - 16 -

Iso­bel Kearl, Na­tional Train­ing Of­fi­cer with St John Am­bu­lance, is here to help.

Hy­pother­mia hap­pens when some­one’s body tem­per­a­ture drops be­low 35°C (95°F) and there are four key things to look for:

1. Shiv­er­ing, cold, pale ap­pear­ance 2. Tired­ness, con­fu­sion, and

ir­ra­tional be­hav­iour

3. Slow and shal­low breath­ing 4. Slow and weak­en­ing pulse

If the per­son is out­side, if pos­si­ble try to get them in­doors. Cover them with lay­ers of blan­kets and warm the room. Give them some­thing warm to drink, like soup, and high en­ergy food or drink.

Seek med­i­cal help and while you wait for help to ar­rive, keep check­ing their breath­ing, pulse and level of re­sponse. Be aware the hy­pother­mia may also be dis­guis­ing the symp­toms of a se­ri­ous un­der­ly­ing ill­ness or in­jury such as a stroke, di­a­betes, heart at­tack or un­der­ac­tive thy­roid.

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