The risks of staying out too long in these cold temperatures are very real.

According to the National Weather Service, with the combination of Monday night's winds and cold temperatures, you could get frostbite in just several minutes without proper clothing.

UT Medical Center Dr. Jasmine Patterson said frostbite can affect your feet, ears, nose and even a bald head. It basically freezes the cells and tissues in your extremities, causing pain.

"They can get very bright red initially and then that can transition into white, [and] pale," she said.

After a while, if you don't get medical attention, the pain will subside. But, that's no reason for celebration.

"Your fingers could get hard and in an advanced case of frostbite, they could start to change colors to purple, dark blue and even black," she said.

Patterson said a few factors can make frostbite even worse. She said if you smoke outside, your blood vessels may constrict and speed up the frostbite.

Patterson added that drinking alcohol or caffeine in cold weather can result in the same effect.

She recommends that East Tennesseans stay inside and dress in warm layers if they have to go outside.

If you find yourself frostbit, you should seek medical attention immediately.

Read or Share this story: http://on.wbir.com/1cUSJso