ROCHESTER, Minn. - If you're heading to Improv-Ice this weekend, a Mayo Clinic doctor has a few tips for avoiding frostbite.
Doctor Peter Smars of Mayo Clinic's Department of Emergency Medicine says the best way to avoid frostbite is to dress for the weather. That means layers, gloves or mittens, and a warm hat, as well as hand warmers if you have access to them.
Dr. Smars says if you begin feeling pain in your fingers, toes, ears, or at the tip of your nose, warm them up immediately, and don't re-expose them to the cold.
"Once you have re-warmed them, it's critical that you do not expose yourself again right away to the cold weather, because then the damage will be much worse," Dr. Smars said.
The doctor also says if those affected areas start feeling numb or turning whitish or yellowish, seek medical attention.
Additionally, Dr. Smars says adults should avoid smoking cigarettes in very cold conditions, as they increase their risk of getting frostbite.
"Do not smoke, do not chew tobacco, because that does constrict your blood vessels, and you're at much higher risk of frostbite," Smars said.
Dr. Smars says some people are more prone to frostbite than others for a multitude of reasons.