Aid For Bleeding
While regular bumps and bruises are
an everyday phenomenon, sometimes your child may suffer a more severe injury.
And while an adult can sustain a 500ml loss of blood without severe repercussions, a loss of so much blood could cause a lot of damage to a child, and could be fatal in an infant.
The first step to take in any injury,
be it a fracture or a gash, would be to control the bleeding before attempting
anything else. Here's what you should do:
Seek medical help, urgently. The extent
of your child's injury may be hidden, so act quickly.
Make your child lie down, with his face
Raise the legs by placing them on pillows.
Lack of blood flow to the brain may cause your child to faint, so this
increases the flow of blood to the brain. But if the legs are fractured,
try not to move them.
You should also raise the injured limb
and rest it, when possible.
Loosen any tight clothing or belts.
Don't apply any heat to the wound (eg.
Hot water bottles). You could, however, cover your child with a blanket.
Remove any external debris and dirt
carefully. But don't remove anything that has been imbeded in the skin.
Apply direct pressure to the wound.
Use a clean cloth, place it on the wound and firmly press down. If blood
soaks through the cloth, don't remove it. Simply cover it with another
layer of cloth. BUT, if something is imbedded in the skin, DON'T apply
direct pressure over it.
Similarly, if applying direct pressure
does not reduce the bleeding, apply pressure to the artery that is supplying
blood to that limb. Press the artery close to the bone under it.
It is best to apply pressure to the
pressure points closest to the wound, so know the pressure points. They
are usually in the upper arm or upper leg.
Keep applying pressure till the bleeding
stops. Once it stops or slows down considerably, place a clean dressing,
soaked in antiseptic, over the wound. If the dressing gets soaked in blood,
do not remove it. Simply apply a new dressing on top. The more you fiddle
with the dressing by removing it or peeping to see if the bleeding has
stopped, the longer the bleeding will continue.
Don't give your child anything to eat
or drink. If your child is thirsty, apply some water to his lips, but don't
give him anything to drink.
If the injury is very severe and all
this fails to stop the bleeding, apply a tourniquet. It should be firmly
bound above the bleeding point, to stop blood flow to that point, so blood
loss in controlled. Remember, a tourniquet should ONLY be used as a last
Note down the time you have applied
the tourniquet. The doctor would need to know.
Immobilise the injured part once the
bleeding has stopped, and don't remove any bandages. Get your child to
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