Even if you know that a victim is going to receive medical treatment, you can keep him or her comfortable, reduce the risk of shock, and prevent any injuries from getting worse while waiting. Prompt, efficient action may save a life.
It is important to stop all bleeding as quickly as possible. Remove any clothing from around the wound, and wash away blood and dirt. Apply pressure to control the bleeding. You should wear a pair of disposable gloves if you are dealing with a stranger.
1. Make a pad from a folded piece of clean cloth and hold it over the wound, pressing firmly. Raise the wound above the level of the victim’s heart to reduce the rate of bleeding. Do not try to remove anything that is embedded in the wound.
2. Lay the victim down, taking care to keep the wound above the level of the heart all the time. Keep him as flat as possible, using only a thin pad under the head for comfort. Continue to apply firm pressure to the wound for at least 10 minutes.
3. Leave the pad in place, and cover the wound with a sterile dressing. Bandage this into place, keeping the wound above heart level. The bandage should be firm but should not cut off the blood supply. If blood starts to seep through the dressing, place another pad on top.
4. When the bleeding seems under control, keep the injured part elevated, and take the victim to the hospital. If there is an object embedded in the wound, place rolls of gauze around the wound – this will keep the bandage from pressing on the object.
How To Deal With Major Injuries?
Recognizing and Treating Shock
Shock occurs when not enough oxygen circulates in the body. This may be as a result of a failure in the circulatory system, as in the case of heart attack, or loss of fluid through bleeding, burns, vomiting, or diarrhea. The body responds to the problem by diverting blood to essential organs, and the victim’s skin may become gray and clammy, and the pulse may begin to race. To treat a victim for shock, keep her still, and raise her legs about 12 in (30 cm) to increase the amount of blood returning to the heart. Loosen any tight clothing, and keep her warm. Call an ambulance and be prepared, to resuscitate. Do not give any food or drink.
Cuts and Scrapes
Minor cuts and abrasions can be treated without medical help unless there is a foreign body or a risk of infection.
1. Wash dirt out of a cut or scrape gently, using soap and water on a gauze pad. Avoid fluffy clothes, since they may stick to the wound.
2. Press firmly on the wound with a dean gauze pad to stop the flow of bleeding.
3. Apply an antiseptic cream, then cover the wound with a dressing that is large enough to cover the entire area.