Although medical emergencies can occur in any place and at any time, most people fully believe that they would be up to the task to help. Afterall, being able to help a stranger or even a loved one during a medical emergency has to be a great feeling. Knowing that you would have your wits about you enough to contact emergency services or even be confident enough to apply a tourniquet in time to save someone else’s life would definitely set you out apart from the rest.
The unfortunate fact of the matter is that most people simply aren’t well trained enough on what to do during a medical emergency to be able to jump into action. Whether they lack CPR training or haven’t had enough practice assessing emergency situations, the reality is that first aid training is critical if you want to be totally prepared for handling medical emergencies. Here are some additional tips to help you be ready to take on any medical emergency you may face in your lifetime.
Keep a First Aid Kit at Home, in the Car, and at the Office
Even though basic first aid kits are kind of small and have a limited number of supplies, especially when compared to what health professionals use at hospitals, their contents are nothing less than lifesaving. There are even those who walk around with a supply of Epi-pens and Narcan shots to potentially administer whenever there is a person in need, but it is best to start with an easily obtainable first aid kit. The ones that you would find in stores are just fine, but you will probably want to add a few extra things to your first aid kit. Hand sanitiser is good to have around so that you can quickly sterilise your hands. Belts work well as tourniquets and a simple curved needle and fishing line can easily be used to suture a deep wound if need be. Have multiple first aid kits around so that emergency medical supplies are accessible no matter where you are.
Look for Medical Alert Jewellery
As you will learn in any first aid training course, anyone rendering first aid must minimise the number of assumptions they make about the person they are attempting to help. For example, the way you would render aid to a person with diabetes or high blood pressure might be different than the way you would help someone with a totally clean bill of health. Medical alert bracelets can indicate illnesses and health disorders ranging from HIV to epilepsy. Patients might wear a medical alert necklace that plainly spells out the condition they have as well as a list of allergies and the name and contact information of their next of kin. Prior to doing anything to help someone in need, ensure that you have looked to see if they have any medical alerts.
Remember to Breathe Before Assessing Any Medical Emergency
When you are furiously performing chest compressions, checking a person’s pulse, or otherwise performing first aid, you can lose all sight of what is going on around you. Emergency responders have been known to keep performing first aid even after it becomes clear that the patient that they are working on is not responding positively. You have to breathe and keep your mind clear during an emergency medical situation so that you won’t lose your wits about you. Sure, your adrenaline will be off the charts and you will only have one goal in mind, but if you are going to render aid, then you have to think about the situation as a whole. Take a breath and focus before you assess any medical emergency to determine if and how you can truly help.
Ask Questions Before Rendering Aid
There is a reason that doctors, first responders, and firefighters ask several questions before treating someone who is having a serious medical emergency. First, they don’t want to do any harm and potentially make the situation worse. There could be details about the situation or even the person’s medical background that are crucial in how they must be treated. So, when you see someone who has fainted, is bleeding, or is in the middle of a medical crisis, check to see if there are any witnesses. If the person having the emergency is conscious, you can ask them questions too, but do understand that their ability to communicate clearly could be diminished. A neutral bystander is the best person to ask, as a loved one might be in shock. However, in a medical emergency, it is most important to get all of the information that you can as quick as can be.
Don’t Forget to Call for Emergency Assistance
Of course, being prepared to deal with a medical emergency means that you have to be trained to perform first and be calm enough to act appropriately. Do a quick search for ‘first aid courses near me’ on the web to locate a training facility that will teach you what to do as well as help you to become certified.
Part of the training you will receive while learning all about first aid revolves around quickly contacting emergency services. When you take a first aid course, you will find out just how critical each and every second is during a medical crisis. In fact, you will likely be encouraged to use a mobile phone while you are assessing the situation so that you can get further guidance from the dispatcher.
Keeping Yourself Safe Is Important Too
There are plenty of heroes and heroines who have fallen while acting bravely and attempting to save someone else’s life. In fact, there are plaques and statues dedicated to all of the brave figures who have jumped in and rendered aid during medical emergencies. At the same time, do remember that there is an entire field of professionals who have sworn to help those in need, so it is best to leave them to the task of heroics. What’s more is the fact that you can’t be of much help to someone in need if you aren’t taking care of yourself first. This means that you have to really assess each emergency situation so that you can know how to act properly. In the case of a fire, it is more important to get everyone out of the building than to stop to try and treat a victim’s burns. In order to render as much aid and help as possible, you have to be able to think properly and you also have to be in good physical health. Whenever you are dealing with a medical emergency, realise that your safety is just as important as the person who you are attempting to save.
Seeing someone who is in serious medical need just stirs something up in the soul. You want to try and stabilise them and get them to safety as soon as possible, but without first aid training you might be at a loss as to what to do. Empower yourself and be ready to face any medical emergency by getting first aid certified and following these tips for acting swiftly.