JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – As the cold weather front takes over Mississippi, the risk of hypothermia has increased, especially for those who are outside for long periods of time.

Hypothermia is caused by a significant drop in body temperature when the body is exposed to the cold for a long period of time. Hypothermia symptoms include exhaustion, confusion, slurred speech, memory loss and shivering.

A normal body temperature is at least 98 degrees. A person is considered hypothermic if their body temperature falls below 95 degrees.

Dr. Geri Weiland, a pediatrician at Merit Health River Region, shares that the best way to prevent hypothermia is to stay indoors or locate the nearest shelter as conditions like these are considered life-threatening and dangerous.

“The best thing to do is to stay warm, whether it’s by maintaining room temperature or by wearing warm clothing. Also, consider wearing sunglasses or glasses to prevent damage to your eyes.”

Weiland shared that even people who typically work outside should avoid the outdoors where possible.

“Make sure that if you have power outages in your neighborhoods to check on neighbors,” said Weiland.

Weiland shared that if you have to go out in these conditions for work or even for holiday shopping, bundle up or don’t go outdoors at all.