Winter injuries and illness keep medical staff busy

ST. LOUIS - Medical professionals say they’ve been busy this winter.  Outside, ice and snow are the main culprits.

“You had a lot of people come in with head laceration that needs staples or sutures. Kids are falling and getting hurt on the ice, scraping up their elbows or cutting themselves. Even motor vehicle accidents, people that came in that felt fine at that time but then maybe later in the evening they’re starting to feel the pain from that. They come in, especially since we're open 24 hours now,” Mike Zappulla, a nurse practitioner.

He suggests people go slow, shuffle their feet, and don’t try to overdo it when it comes to shoveling.

“The cold weather can make you feel like you’re not really as worn out as you really are because it’s keeping your body temperature down. For men and women, if you aren’t exercising regularly, and you feel short of breath, and you can feel your heart racing especially if you have chest pain just stop,” he says.

But staying inside may not solve all your problems though.

“You go inside and your nose is still running, your sinuses can you get inflamed and swollen especially with the heaters on drying on the moisture out of the air. It can make you feel short of breath and aggravate those asthma-like symptoms and the cold air can actually cause asthma itself,” says Zuppella.

Not to mention the germs we passed back-and-forth. Many are suffering from colds and flu this time of year.

“The most important thing across the board is good hand hygiene,” he says.

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