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Course Outline

To treat hypothermia:

  • Find shelter for the victim, even if that means you have to go ashore.
  • Remove wet clothing, and replace with dry clothing and other protective covering. If there is no dry clothing, use a fire to dry one layer at a time if you are on land.
  • Give warm liquids to rehydrate and rewarm, but never give the victim alcohol to drink.
  • Give high-calorie foods, such as chocolate, peanuts, or raisins, which provide quick energy that helps your body produce heat.
  • For mild cases, use fire, blankets, or another person’s body heat to warm the victim.
  • In more advanced stages, rewarm the victim slowly by placing one or more persons in body contact with the victim. Place canteens of hot water insulated with socks or towels on the groin, armpits, and sides of the neck of the victim.
  • Handle a victim at or near unconsciousness gently. Do not immerse the victim in a warm bath or expose the person to a large fire, which can lead to traumatic shock or death. Immediately contact emergency medical personnel to evacuate the victim to a hospital for treatment.
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