12 Days of First Aid Tips: Wounds and Bleeding
Christmas is a magical time, but when you’re feeding the five thousand the pressure is officially on. It will take great skill to stop the veg from bubbling over and to hack the massive Turkey into edible sized chunks. And as if that wasn’t enough, dinner is expected on the table in time for the Queen’s speech.
As a gift to you, this year we have compiled a selection of top first aid tips to prepare you for the festive season. In the first instalment we will be looking at how to deal with wounds and bleeding, ensuring that you know exactly what to do should you injure yourself as you hurriedly prepare the great feast.
1# Wounds & Bleeding
Scenario 1: you accidentally slice your hand whilst preparing the roast potatoes. What do you do?
The first thing you must do is apply pressure to the wound. It is important to reduce blood loss to minimise infection and to ensure that enough blood is getting to the brain for recovery.
Place a clean, non-fluffy dressing on the injury and if it continues to bleed apply a second dressing. If blood soaks through the dressings, replace them and apply even more pressure.
Scenario 2: trying to reach the fancy china reserved for special occasions, you accidentally knock the shelf sending wine glasses hurtling towards you. A large shard of glass becomes stuck in your leg. What should you do?
If an object such as a large piece of glass becomes embedded in the wound it will act as a plug stopping the blood from escaping. In this instance, you should apply pressure to the wound around the embedded object and seek medical attention. You must never remove the object as it prevents further blood loss, a medical professional will ensure that the object is removed with great care.
If bleeding becomes severe, depending on the location of the injury, the area of the injury should be elevated above the heart to reduce blood loss.
A casualty may go into shock – a serious condition caused by the failure of the circulatory system that can be life threatening. If you notice the casualty displaying any of the following symptoms they must be treated for shock immediately; pale, cold and clammy skin, rapid shallow breathing, nausea and thirst.
To treat the casualty for shock lay them down on the floor and elevate their legs above the level of the heart. Keep them warm and reassure them whilst you call an ambulance, their breathing should be monitored until the emergency services arrive.
You must always be prepared to resuscitate the casualty because once the circulatory system has shut down vital organs will not receive enough oxygenated blood that allows them to operate.
Keep a lookout for the next instalment of our festive first aid tips as we countdown 12 Days of First Aid Tips in time for Christmas. But in the meantime, if you have any questions about how to treat wounds and bleeding, feel free to contact us on Facebook or Twitter.