Have you found yourself in situations where someone is suffering from asthma, snake bite,nose bleeding or someone has fainted beside you and you were unable to do anything?
This article provides First Aid Tips for Four Basic Emergencies
– Snake bite
– Nose Bleeding
First Aid is the first care given to people when they suffer sudden illness or injury, usually with the intention to keep them stable enough before they can get access to better treatment. Many a times, in not so serious cases, first aid might be the only treatment that an emergency victim would get. It is very important that you are abreast with some knowledge about how to render first aid in some common circumstances. In this article, I would be discussing three common situations where your knowledge of first aid might just save a life.
Asthma is a respiratory condition marked by spasms in the bronchi of the lungs, causing difficulty in breathing. It is simply a lung disease that results in difficulty in breathing. The airway is blocked, and the difficulties in breathing that the victim faces are referred to as asthma attack. Asthma attacks are common in environments where there is serious dust, smoke, or other substances that can interfere with the airways. Rigorous exercise can also lead to asthma attacks, as well as stress. You do not need to know details about the asthma condition, but I believe that a vast majority of us are familiar with this term.
The symptoms that will help you identify a victim of asthma attacks are:
1. Difficulty in breathing: This is easy to spot by just studying the victim. His/her hand movements might indicate that breathing has become forced.
2. Difficulty in talking: The patient ia unable to talk clearly.
3. Shortage of Breath: The patient seems not to be getting enough air.
4. Wheezing: A high pitched whistling sound made while breathing
5. Chest Tightness: This patient keeps holding his chest
7. Anxiety and irregular body spasms and movements
1. Help the patient to a comfortable upright sitting position
2. Encourage the patient to keep taking in very deep breaths.
3. Help the victim take their medication if they have it on them.
4. If the room is not well aired, open doors and windows
5. If the environment is heavily polluted by dust or smoke, relocate the victim immediately.
6. Call for help and ask for the nearest clinic or hospital
7. Stay with the victim.
8. Advise the victim to learn more about the causes and triggers of their condition so as to be safer next time.
Snakes are dangerous reptiles that transfer or inject poisonous venom into the blood stream of victims when they are bitten. You might just save a life with your knowledge of first aid.
First ensure that the area is now safe from any further snake attacks. If there are others around, they could help find and kill the snake, and know whether its poisonous or not.
1. The actual bite point should be quickly identified.
2. Ask the victim for the time he/she was bitten. This will help you gauge how far the poison must have gone. You can also ask the victim to touch where and where he/she feels the pain more.
3. Encourage the patient to remain as quiet and stiff as possible. Too much movement might aid the venom to move faster.
4. Find a small cloth, sufficient to tie the area above where the snake bite was effected to prevent the poison from rising any further. This cloth is called a tourniquet. You can relax the tourniquet after twenty minutes and tie it again.
5. Make an incision or a small cut about 1cm long and 5mm deep over the bite to encourage bleeding so that the venom can bleed out. Use warm water on the wound to make the bleeding faster and clean the wound.
6. If the bleeding is slow, this could mean that there is a blockage. You have to force out the blood by either applying pressure around the bite or sucking out the venom and immediately spitting it out. Do not mistakingly swallow the blood… And if you have a wound in your mouth, abstain from this.
7. Dress the wound and properly bandage it.
8. Take the victim to the nearest hospital.
Fainting is a sudden, brief loss of consciousness caused by decreased blood flow to the brain. The decreased blood flow to the brain, means decreased oxygen to the brain, since blood transports oxygen. Other terms used to describe fainting are passing out or blacking out or syncope (the more scientific or medical term).
When a person faints, which is usually an abrupt loss of consciousness, you should do the following.
1. Immediately lie the person flat on his or her back.
2. Loosen up the patient’s clothing if they are too tight
3. Elevate the person’s legs to force blood flow to the brain.
4. Shake the person vigorously for a while and wait for the patient to respond.
5. Commence CPR if thr patient fails to respond. CPR- Cardiopulmonary resuscitation involves strategically placing both palms above the chest of the victim and applying quick pressure in quick counts.
6. When the patient is conscious, provide him or her with water, or juice, if available.
7. Stay around the person until he or she fully recovers.
8. Advise the victim to see a doctor if you suspect that he or she might have sustained an injury during the fall or slump. Also advise that the precise nature of the condition should be relayed to the doctor, in cases where such fainting occurs frequently.
Bleeding nose can be caused by a number of reasons. It could be an injury in the nose, hardening of the arteries and even high blood pressure in severe cases. When a victim of bleeding nose is around you, how can you help?
1. Help the patient to a chair, and instruct him or her to lean his or her forward. The common thing that people do once they see a bleeding nose is to lean back and shoot their head upward. This is not right. When a bleeding nose occurs, you should first reduce pressure in the nose by leaning forward and calming down.
2. Instruct the patient to press the bleeding nostril against the septum. The septum is the middle lining of the nose. This is aimed at blocking the free passage of blood. If the person is unable to do this, use a glove to help him or her hold that position for about 10 to 20 minutes.
3. When the bleeding finally stops, thr patient should be advised to not blow his or her nose in a while to prevent the reopening of the wound.
4. Severe blows to the nose can cause serious injuries which might be difficult to stop the bleeding. The nearest hospital should be located. If a pack of ice is available, this could be placed over the nose.
We will provide more first aid safety tips for you… You might just be someone’s hero someday.