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Friday, August 13, 2010

First Aid - helpful tips

First Aid
"Learning First-aid is a civic responsibility of each and every person"
May be defined as "on the spot" and immediate help or aid to help any fellow being in physical distress or serious disease, which may be life threatening.
Aims of First Aid:
  • To preserve life
  • To promote recovery
  • To prevent any complication
General Rules of First Aid
  • Restore breathing
  • Restore heart beat if stopped
  • Arrest bleeding
  • Prevent shock
  • But do not do or attempt anything in which you have no expertise.
    Do no harm!


(E.g. Fire accidents, victims trapped in smoke, building collapse, choking by food or something swallowed)
  • DON'T be Panicky & run helter shelter.
  • DON'T rush out through same exits - use emergency exits.
  • DON'T be too selfish, be helpful to other victims.
  • Once out of danger area/site of accident move victims to safer and open place.
  • Try to clean soot from nostrils with any clean cloth, preferably wet.
  • If victim is dazed or unconscious - remove or loosen constricting dress or ornaments on neck and chest.
  • If victim is not breathing, give mouth to mouth breathing.
  • Evacuate all serious victims to nearby clinic or Hospital.
  • Learn Heimlich manoeuvre in case of choking while swallowing.


  • Check electrical wirings at intervals at home
  • Inform electricity department if you see any loose connection, detached wires on road side.
  • Don't walk blindly at night in rainy season.
  • Keep electrical goods and plug points out of reach of children.
In case of electrical shock / burn
  • Push the victim off the contact, protecting yourself, using proper insulation. Stand on a bundle of newspaper.
  • Switch off the mains and use a wooden pole to push victim
  • Check if victim is breathing and check pulse (heartbeat)
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) if necessary.
  • In case of electrical burn, treat and give first aid as in burn or fire accident.


generally occurs due to consuming contaminated water or food. It is fairly common in places where mass cooking takes place. Food handlers like cooks & servers are the main culprits. It can also occur at home.
To prevent food poisoning:
  • Cook food items, especially meat, properly & well.
  • Do not allow diseased individuals inside the kitchen.
  • Do not purchase food items from unauthorised and unhygienic shops.
  • Don't consume any food items beyond the expiry date.
  • Keep kitchen / place for cooking clean and free from lizards and flies.
  • Ensure proper hygienic measures by all food handlers - like trimming finger nails, disease free fingernails, washing hands with soap and water after toilet, before handling any food items.
  • Avoid eating or drinking juices etc. on roadside, where flies are likely to contaminate.
In case of food poisoning:
  • Identify the culprit food item.
  • Seek medical advice for all those affected.
  • Educate victims and public how to safeguard one self.


(Accidental or suicidal)
  • Do not keep poisonous chemicals within reach of children; keep them under lock.
  • In case of suspected poisoning, induce vomiting by putting finger into mouth and throat or by giving salted water.
  • Keep the victim flat, head turned to one side when vomiting.
  • Keep sample of vomits for analysis.
  • Remove soiled clothes & wash out any stains over the body.
  • Seek expert medical aid as soon as possible.


to avoid road accidents
  • Don't drive too fast.
  • Obey traffic rules and give proper signals while driving.
  • Anyone suffering from fits or under the effect of sedatives, alcohol etc - not to drive a vehicle.

In case of any accident
  • Carefully extricate victim from vehicle.
  • Do not handle wounded (fractured) limb unnecessarily.
  • See if victim is breathing and check pulse.
  • Clean and remove any loose material inside mouth and throat to clear airway.
  • Keep victim in lying position and in safe place.
  • Control bleeding by application of pressure with folded clean cloth.
  • While shifting, shift in one piece to prevent dislocation or aggravation of spine injury.
  • Loosen or cut garments or ornaments causing pressure on neck, chest or abdomen.
  • Seek expert medical advice at the earliest to transport and treat the victim.


every time a person goes into fits, it is injurious to his health and can produce complications.
To prevent an epileptic from throwing fits:
  • He should take prescribed preventive drugs regularly and as long as advised by his doctor.
  • Epileptic should not be allowed access to fire in kitchen, swimming pool, moving machinery or car driving.
  • Not to go or work at heights, unattended.
In case of fits:
  • Turn head to one side in lying position, to allow saliva to come out.
  • Clear airway as in any unconscious patient.
  • Elevate lower jaw and press on chin to keep mouth open and avoid biting tongue.
  • Keeping any blunt object or folded kerchief between teeth to prevent biting tongue to be done cautiously, since pushing there too far into throat will cause obstruction to airway.
  • Arrange to seek medical attention.


If a person has collapsed or fallen down or found unconscious, it may be due to several diseases. The first aider should do no harm; he should ensure that victims breathing & heartbeat is restored and try and prevent any further harm to the victim.
  • Turn head to one side to allow vomits or saliva to come out.
  • Clear airway and mouth if obstructed.
  • Check for breathing and heartbeat / pulse and feel for pulse (carotid pulse) in the neck. If one or both are absent institute cardiopulmonary resuscitation. (cardiac massage and mouth to mouth breathing - "The kiss of life")
  • Do not give any oral feeds to an unconscious patient.
  • Keep the victim warm - don't leave him unattended.
  • Arrange to get medical attention at the earliest.


don’t jump into water or indulge in water sports without knowing swimming. Epileptics to avoid swimming. In case of drowning, after the victim is brought ashore do the following:
  • Turn victim face down with head turned to one side and arms stretched above the head. Children can be held upside down.
  • Raise belly of victim to drain water from the lungs.
  • Remove wet cloth and keep body warm.
  • If victims is conscious hot drinks may be given.
  • Transfer to nearby hospital at the earliest.


following common situations in our daily life predispose to burn accident. Avoid them.
  • Use of pressure stove.
  • Nylon and other inflammable dress in the kitchen.
  • Use of open flame bed-lamp.
  • Not taking proper precautions while using cooking gas.
  • Floor level cooking.
  • Children and epileptics in kitchen, without supervision.
  • Firing crackers inside the house.
  • Smoking in bed.
  • Not taking proper precautions while using electrical appliances.
  • Storing inflammable materials like petrol in the house.


following common situations in our daily life predispose to burn accident. Avoid them.
  • Victim of fire accident should lie on floor and roll slowly.
  • Put out flame by covering with thick blanket.
  • Pour water or even mud or sand (in an open place) to put out the fire.
  • Use ice cold water or compresses- start early and continue for 15-20 minutes.
  • Wash hands and remove tight rings and bangles and loosen dress.
  • Don't apply any local medication till a qualified Doctor sees.
  • Cover the burn victim with clean or freshly laundered cloth.
  • For chemical burn, bathe the affected area with plenty of water - victim to have a good shower. Loosen and remove dress soaked in chemical.
  • For electrical burns, switch off the mains before attending to the victim or take due precautions against getting a shock oneself.
  • Seek medical help as early as possible.


CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) For Yourself: What To Do If You Have a Heart Attack While You Are Alone. The Johnson City Medical Centre (USA) staff actually discovered this, and did an in-depth study on it in our ICU. The two individuals that discovered this then did an article on it, had it published, and even had it incorporated into ACLS and CPR classes.
It has worked, and does work. It is called "Cough CPR".
A cardiologist says it's the truth. Read this — it could save your life!
A Typical Scenario:
Let's say it's 6:15 PM and you're driving home — alone of course — after an unusually hard day on the job. You're really tired, upset, and frustrated.
Suddenly you start experiencing severe pain in your chest that starts to radiate out into your arm, and up into your jaw. You are only about five miles from the nearest hospital. Unfortunately you don't know if you'll be able to make it that far.
What can you do? You've been trained in CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation), but the guy that taught the course didn't tell you what to do if it happened to yourself. First advice: pull to the side of the road, stop your car, and turn the flashing hazard lights on.

How to Survive a Heart Attack When Alone?
Since many people are alone when they suffer a heart attack, this article seems to be in the order. Without help, the person whose heart is beating properly, and who begins to feel faint, has only about 10 seconds left before losing consciousness.
However, these victims can help themselves by coughing repeatedly, and very vigorously. A deep breath should be taken before each cough, and the cough must be deep and prolonged, as when producing sputum from deep inside the chest. A breath and a cough must be repeated about every two seconds without let up until help arrives, or until the heart is felt to be beating normally again.
Deep breaths get oxygen into the lungs, and coughing movements squeeze the heart and keep the blood circulating. The squeezing pressure on the heart also helps it regain normal rhythm. In this way, heart attack victims can get to a hospital.

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Disclaimer: These articles is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. we used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions.