Around 131 million people in America visit the emergency room every year. It is barely surprising that the emergency departments are always busy.
Having some knowledge of first aid can save you from visiting the hospital and prevent a minor injury from escalating to a major injury.
Do not fret if you do not know what to do in case you have a minor injury. This post will outline the basic ways of treating minor injuries without going to the hospital and situations when you should reach for professional medical assistance.
First aid kit and its role during an emergency.
A well equipped first aid kit is essential when you need to offer immediate assistance and care to an injured person before the medics arrive.
Every homeowner should have a first aid kit having all the basic first aid essentials. Storing a complete kit ready for use can help deal with minor injuries quickly at home.
The basic first aid essentials.
- Antiseptic or alcohol wipes.
- Adhesive tape.
- Different sized crepe bandages.
- Cold packs.
- Scissors and tweezers.
- Saline wash.
- Antibiotic ointment and aloe Vera gel.
- Hydrocortisone cream.
- Hand sanitizer.
- Antihistamine and other allergy medications.
- Latex-free medical gloves.
It is recommended that you store the first aid kit in an obvious and reachable place like the bathroom or alongside other medications. Ensure that the kit is kept high enough to prevent children from getting into it.
First-aid tips for minor cuts and scrapes
Scrapes and cuts are some of the common injuries at home, especially among children. Luckily, they are treatable with the following first aid tips.
Before handling a cut, ensure you wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer if you are away from home. Use a clean cloth or piece of gauze and apply pressure on the wound to arrest bleeding.
After the bleeding is stopped, use running water or saline solution to clean the wound. Avoid using soap as it can lead to irritation. Remove any debris or dirt left in the cut using tweezers.
Tie a bandage around the cut after administering first aid to prevent infections and dirt from getting into the area.
Seek medical care if you have the following conditions,
- The cut is deep, long, and has tapered edges.
- Scrape or cut from a dirty or rusty object.
- Cut from human or animal bites.
- Bleeding does not stop.
- If the cut is on the face.
- The cut produces pus.
First aid for nose bleeding
Nose bleeding can bring fear to the victim, but the following first-aid procedure will help fix it at home.
Lean your head forward to prevent the blood from flowing back to your throat and hold your nostrils for five minutes. Hold a cloth or a tissue under your nose to prevent blood from causing a mess.
Check if the bleeding has stopped after five minutes and if not, continue pressing your nostrils for ten more minutes.
Seek medical attention if;
- You are feeling dizzy, faint, or weak.
- If the bleeding does not stop after 20 minutes.
- The bleeding is fast and heavy.
- The cause of nosebleed is a result of different injuries in your face.
Tips for removing splinters
Removing splinters requires courage as they can be unpleasant and tricky, especially if it involves small children. The first thing should be to keep the splinter area clean and avoid pushing it any further.
After cleaning the splinter site, you may start to pull it out at the same angle it entered the skin. If it is under the skin, you may use a sterilized needle to open the skin above it.
Wear gloves to avoid direct contact with blood from the victim to prevent possible infection of any sexually transmitted disease in case either party is positive for STDs.
After removing the splinter, ensure you clean the area with soap and running water.
How to treat minor burns
Burns are very painful, and they need to be controlled as quickly as possible to prevent them from escalating to a more complex burn degree.
Immediately you receive a burn, run it under cold water for five minutes, then apply cream or coolant spray on the area. According to the degree of the burn, you can wrap it using a loose gauze bandage.
Reach for medical attention if;
- The burn is 2 or 3 inches big.
- The burn is in the face.
- The burn is on the face, feet, and hands.
- It is a chemical or electrical burn.
- The burn is third degree.
Treating insect stings
Stings are common during summertime when camping or relaxing at home in your outdoor space. If you are not allergic to insect bites, treating the bite at home should not be a problem.
Immediately you have an insect sting, look for the stinger and remove it if it is left on the skin. Use the blunt edge of the knife to scrape the stinger out, and then place a cold press on the sting and put some calamine lotion on the area.
In case of a severe allergic reaction or anaphylaxis, call 911 immediately and start CPR as you wait for the paramedics to arrive.
This is done because anaphylactic shock can lead to swelling of the tongue and throat, obstructing the airway.
Minor injuries are common occurrences at home. Knowing the basic first aid can help solve them without going to the hospital.
Getting an injury can be a shock, whether it is a minor or a major damage, and it is common for a person to panic
However, staying calm is the first step towards taking control of the situation. Keeping cool will allow you to inspect the injury soberly and decide the best method to handle it.
If the injury is worse and you cannot treat it at home, do not hesitate to seek professional medical attention.
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