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First aid. How to deal with emergencies?

2022-04-15

At the beginning, it should be emphasized very clearly that it is our duty to provide help to people who have had an accident or are in another situation that may threaten their health and life. Of course, each of us behaves and reacts differently in stressful situations. Some people panic and cannot control their thoughts, while others, on the contrary, act calmly and methodically. Fortunately, many things can be learned, and practice makes perfect. If we take care to develop appropriate habits and find a moment from time to time to remember the rules of first aid, it is very likely that when the time of trial comes, we will emerge unscathed. When human life is at risk, every minute counts, which is why it is so important to be able to quickly make the right decisions and implement them. Quick and organized action increases the chances of saving the injured and is a great help for medical services, which only reach the scene of the incident after some time. If many people witness the incident, the optimal situation is when one of them takes command and begins to direct the entire action before the arrival of the ambulance, police or fire brigade. Thanks to this, the rest of the people know what to do, no one panics and rational actions can be taken.

Where to start? ABC  of first aid

The first thing to do when you witness an accident or other incident that has injured someone is to assess the situation. It is necessary to determine what exactly happened and secure the scene of the incident in such a way that nothing worse happens to both the injured and other witnesses of the event. The next step is to remove the so-called A factor affecting the injured party. This is not always possible, e.g. when there is a very serious traffic accident, but in a situation where a person in need of help has been crushed by something that can be removed independently or with the help of other witnesses, it should be done. Next, you need to assess the condition of the injured person and whether their health and life are at risk as a result of the accident. If the person involved in the accident is not in contact, you need to check their vital signs (consciousness, pulse, breathing) and make sure there is nothing stuck in their respiratory tract. Then it's time to assess the injuries suffered by the injured person and call the appropriate services for help.

What to do if the injured person loses consciousness?

Checking for breathing is one of the most important steps to take when assessing an injured person. To do it properly, you need to put her on her back and tilt her head, and then lean over her in such a way that you can simultaneously observe whether her chest is moving and feel her breath on your cheek. This should not take longer than 10 seconds. If the injured person takes 2-3 breaths during this time, they can be placed in the recovery position and immediately call the appropriate services. If breathing cannot be detected, resuscitation measures must be taken. When we are alone, we must call an ambulance before attempting resuscitation, and if someone else witnesses the incident, we should immediately entrust it to a selected person. 

CPR – how to do it right?

Resuscitation activities should be continued until the services arrive and the injured person is "taken over" by qualified rescuers. Properly performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation should proceed as follows:

  • start with chest compressions at a rate of 100-120 compressions per minute. If possible, at least 2 people should be involved in this activity, so that they can change every minute, because this task is really difficult and tiring. Compressions should be performed with the heel of the hands placed approximately at the level of the solar plexus. Your arms should be straight at the elbows.
  • Rescue breaths are performed only when we are sure that there is nothing stuck in the injured person's airways. When we are sure that the breathing tube is clear, we put our mouth to the mouth of the rescued person and take 2 vigorous breaths. There are 2 breaths for every 30 chest compressions. If for some reason we do not want or cannot perform artificial respiration, we can stop with heart massage. It is more important because it ensures adequate blood flow and thus ensures the supply of oxygen to all organs.

These are the absolute basics of first aid, but it is also worth learning what to do if someone around you chokes, gets injured, suffers a hemorrhage, burns, fracture or dislocation.   

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