8. First Aid for Wounds


Today our lesson will be about wounds, their types and first aid recommended in case of wounds. Both in everyday life and accidents, a person can get various types of injuries. According to statistics, one fifth of all injuries are wounds. Wounds are any damage to tissues with a violation of the integrity of the skin or mucous membranes. Wounds can be superficial. When the skin and mucous membranes are damaged and deep, there is a damage to nerves, blood vessels, and even internal organs. The greatest danger to life is caused by deep wounds when the head or abdominal and thoracic organs are damaged. The main signs of wounds are pain, visible damage to the skin, the divergence of the wound edges and bleeding.

Providing first aid for wounds: Check safety for yourself, and assess the victim's condition, consciousness and breathing. Call an ambulance if needed. For any injury, bleeding and contamination are two of the most challenging complications. It is necessary to stop the bleeding properly and prevent infection of the wound. Before providing First Aid, wash your hands with soap and wear disposable gloves. If there are no gloves, you can use plastic bags or similar waterproof elastic material. If you did not use any protective equipment, wash your hands with soap after your actions. Then wash the wound with cold clean water. Treat it with any available antiseptic. It is better to treat only the skin around the edges of the wound if it is an alcohol-based antiseptic.

After placing a clean bandage on the wound, fix it tight enough to stop bleeding. Injuries may have a foreign object inside. It may be a knife, sharp piece of glass or metal, nail, etc. If a foreign object is in a wound, do not remove it as it may provoke or increase bleeding. The golden rule of a knife or any other item stuck in the body, is do not remove it and fix it in place. The knife will be released in the hospital. An exception to this rule are objects that penetrated the cheek and block the airways.

Napkins, cotton gauze, bandages, handkerchiefs and other aids can be used as fixation bandages. Carefully fasten the bandage around the foreign object. The bandage must not be too tight. Do not leave the victim alone until the arrival of the ambulance. Suppose, as a result of an incident you observe a wound to the abdomen accompanied by the loss of internal organs. In that case, it is prohibited to put the intestine loop back in the wound. You must enclose the dropped out internal organs with sterile tissue preferably wet with water.

Now, let's talk about wounds due to bites of pets or wild animals. The most common of them are cats, dogs, rats, hamsters, foxes, raccoons, mice, hedgehogs. The risk of animal bites depends on several factors: The size and depth of the bite, the timeliness of first aid, animal contagion. An animal can be infected with the rabies virus contained in its saliva. Therefore, biting and drooling wounds are very likely to be infected. When you help the victim of an animal bite, make sure you are safe. If the bite wound is superficial, rinse the bite site under running water and soap. The rabies virus dies due to the soap alkali content. Wash the bite site for at least five minutes.

If the bite injury is deep and the wound is bleeding massively, do not seek to stop the bleeding immediately as it

contributes to removing the animal’s saliva from the wound. Then the wound should also be washed with water

and soap for at least 10-15 minutes, and then a sterilized bandage should be applied. If the bleeding does not stop, additionally apply a pressure bandage. Immediately call an ambulance or take the victim to the closest medical facility where vaccination against the rabies will be resolved. To sum up, today you have learned what a wound is, how to provide first aid to victim with different types of wounds properly. How to provide first aid if there is an animal bite or a foreign body in the wound.

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