The Essential First Aid Course, Part 2: Managing Bleeding and Infection
How to manage bleeding and infection is another core skill you should know something about as a serious survival expert. None start as an expert, but after this article, you will have more knowledge. Another step in the correct direction.
How to take care of injuries during a disaster or an emergency
In our premier article, we outlined and analyzed some of the suitable techniques used in assessing an unconscious patient and administering CPR. We also realized how important the security of the first aider is, and should first be considered before any effort to administer CPR.
Well, today, we will analyze the numerous and competent ways of taking care of injuries. Wound care is yet another essential skill that aids in warding off infections and septic infection from injured victims.
Objectives of wound care
Four key objectives govern all wound care techniques. These objectives aim:
1. To lower and terminate the flow of blood in affected areas.
2. To lower the growth of microorganisms through adequate cleaning of the wound.
3. To protect the wound from further contagion by employing sufficient dressing to the wound.
4. To institute the natural healing of the wound and bolster the activity of the affected body.
How to regulate of terminate bleeding
Bleeding naturally occurs when there are damaged or torn blood vessels.
All categories of wounds do bleed. Few rivulets of blood tend to appear when we scratch our skin with our nails. This type of bleeding can easily be controlled by exerting minor pressure around the affected area.
But there are situations when extensive and deep wounds bleed extensively, and it’s pretty difficult to stabilize the blood flow.
Deep wounds are associated with damaged capillaries, veins, and arteries with blood gushing out from all of them. Kindly adhere to these steps whenever you are faced with a wound that is gushing out lots of blood:
1. Exert Pressure –Exerting pressure on the affected area can aid in enhancing the clotting process. Gently press down the affected area with a clean gauze or cloth until the blood clots and stops flowing. Avoid the use of pressure as this could improve the blood flow and cause further injury to the skin.
2. Change the Person’s Position –Whenever possible, advice the patient to lie down as this will lower his blood pressure and heart rate as well as the flow of blood. If the victim is scared, there is the possibility of an increased flow of blood because his heart bit pumps blood faster
3. Elevate! –If you notice that the victim is bleeding from his/her arms, feet, hands or legs alternate the person’s position in such a way that the affected area is elevated above the heart. This will lower the blood pressure within the affected area/s.
4. Practice Layering –In situations where the size and depth of the injury prevent you from stopping the bleeding even after exerting pressure and additional gauzing on it, it, therefore, means that the wound is too severe for first aid.
Add some additional layers of clean gauze to the already selected layers. Desist from removing the layer immediate to the wound as this may reopen the already clotted wound.
How to protect a wound from getting infected
Infected wounds can lead to the destruction and disintegration of tissues in extreme cases.
After disrupting the flow of blood from the wound, you should proceed to disinfect it. You can achieve this and prevent the chances of getting the wound infected by following these steps:
1. Examine the wound daily during which you extract any foreign particle clinched to it. Avoid removing particles that are deeply entrenched in the wound as doing so could lead to more tissue damage and complications.
2. After examining the wound, disinfect the wound by applying disinfectants such as iodine or alcohol on it and its surrounding environment. Ensure the injury is always left clean and sanitized at least once daily.
3. Replace old gauze with fresh ones, as they could cause damages and create an avenue for infections. Make use of nonstick gauzes as they will not damage the surface of the wound when removed.
4. Ensure you administer enough bandaging to prevent the nonstick gauze from moving about or falling off. If you do not have any medical bandage, make use of any clean long piece of cloth.