Dealing with Medical Emergencies
When it comes to dealing with medical emergencies, many people are not fully prepared for what they should do. Medical services exist to help but it’s important that you know yourself the proper steps to take in dealing with medical emergencies.
It’s not enough just to know what to do in an emergency situation; you also need to know how to prepare yourself emotionally. Some people respond differently in medical emergencies. When you prepare yourself for an emergency, you will be better equipped emotionally to deal with something that may occur.
You won’t be caught off-guard and freeze up or panic. This is the problem that many people encounter when they are faced with an emergency. They are not emotionally prepared and so when something happens they can’t think straight. They begin to panic and have no control over themselves so there is nothing they can do to help the person with the emergency.
Fortunately, there are a few simple steps that you can do to prepare yourself emotionally. When you are dealing with an emergency stop and take a deep breath. Tell yourself this is what you have been preparing for and that you can handle it. Knowing that you have the knowledge to deal with emergencies will give you the confidence you need to stay emotionally calm and focused.
Begin by accessing the situation and determining what the problem is and what you need to do to help. If someone is already performing emergency care, it may be best to step aside and help by keeping other bystanders out of the way.
You should always try to look at the situation as a whole and see what the most immediate and serious problem is and what you can do to help. Treat the most life-threatening situations first.
Have a First Aid Kit
A first aid kit is very important for helping you deal with medical emergencies. It can also be helpful if you know basic first aid and/or CPR. You should have a first aid kit around your home and in your automobile in case something happens on the road.
Your first aid kit should include supplies such as:
- • Water (sport-top bottle)
- • Gloves (non-latex nitrile or plastic)
- • Gauze (sterile or clean 4x4s or 3x3s)
- • Band-aids
- • Tape (paper or plastic)
- • Bandana
- • Aspirin and/or ibuprofen
- • Benadryl
- • Arnica (homeopathic)
- • Rescue Remedy
- • Candy or energy bar
- • Rehydration drink mix (e.g., Emergen-C)
- • Suncreen (alcohol-based)
- • Roller gauze
- • Antiseptic wash or wipes
- • Sunscreen (alcohol-based)
- • Maalox or other liquid antacid mixed 1:1 with water (sport-top
- • bottle)
- • Mineral oil and rubbing alcohol (in separate bottles)
- • Tampons
- • Safety pins
- • Paper and plastic bags
- • Pen and paper
- • Bandage scissors
- • Flashlight
You can learn how to help someone from choking, perform basic first aid or CPR if someone isn’t breathing. Do you know what to do is someone is
Recognize a Medical Emergency
One way to be prepared is to know how to recognize a medical emergency. Some emergencies are obvious such as an automobile accident, broken bones and other complications. Other problems may not be as obvious but if you learn how to recognize a medical emergency, you will be one step closer to helping or getting help when something like this occurs.
When to Call 911
There are some situations that can be handled on their own and there are other times when it’s best to call for professional medical help. Do you know when you should call for 911? Here are some situations where you should call 911:
• Bloody diarrhea
• Chest pain
• Coma (unresponsive victim)
• Drug overdose
• Heart attack
• Heat stroke
• Rectal bleeding
• Shortness of breath
• Slurred speech
• Sudden blindness (see stroke)
• Uncontrolled bleeding
• Uncontrolled nose bleed
• Vomiting blood
• Serious Burns
• Bleeding that will not stop
• Bleeding with weakness (shock)
• Broken bones visible through an open wound
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You can also help with dealing with medical emergencies if you have a certain medical condition by carrying or wearing a medical ID tag or bracelet of some sort. This way, if something happens to you and you are unable to speak, emergency personnel will known your situation.