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Basic First Aid

Prevention is best rather than having an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff but it pays to know the basics to get by. This is not a complete First Aid course but very basic.

So I suggest you go to a course on First Aid and Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation. You should learn once a year. The knowledge changes.

Walk with a cell phone on you so that you can call an ambulance if you see someone seriously injured or a car accident. It happens some times. On first seeing it ring the local ambulance. Always call for help.

Check to see if the situation is safe to approach first. If you can’t swim, don’t jump in to try to rescue a drowning man. Both of you will drown and it’s a waste.

Should you see a car crash and power lines down, don’t go near the car to rescue people in it, ring emergency and get help. You could get electrocuted and die.

Always assess the situation first. Is it safe? Will you be safe?

Should the situation be safe for you to approach, first check to see if the person is breathing, if they are not they are in trouble. Check the airways to see if there is a blockage. Learn how to do CPR, which is Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation. You need to go to a course to learn to do that, we have either Red Cross or St Johns Ambulance in New Zealand.

So if you can’t do that call for help. If you can, go ahead.

Is there bleeding? If there is bandage the wound as best as you can. If there is glass or objects in the wound don’t pull it out. Put a dressing around it and get them to hospital or call the ambulance.

Now someone at work once lost part of her thumb, a superficial wound. You put that cut part of the thumb in a bag of ice  and wrap them in a bandage get them to hospital as soon as possible.

Is the wounded person conscious? If they don’t respond put them into the recovery position if its safe to do so. However, if you suspect a spinal injury do not move them at all unless it’s essential they move for their own life. Get help. The first aid course tells you how to move a person with a suspected spinal injury but you need other people to help.

Simple Wounds

At home, simple things. Cut yourself. Wash and use an anti septic. Keep wound clean. Put on a band aid. If you have a rash from a plant in the garden, you can use dettol, it’s a liquid antiseptic. There are some plants good for that. Aloe Vera, or Dock for stinging nettle.

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Written by Pamela Moresby

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