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How to Speech-First Aid

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According to an article written by Kirstine Rice on the American Safety and Health Institute website, about 1/3 of all injuries in the United States occur at home. Knowing basic first aid is an extremely important skill to know when accidents do arise. All throughout life we go through experiences that lead us to these injuries. Whether it is cooking in the kitchen, riding a bike, or even just walking down the street accidents can happen. And being the kind of kid who did everything my parents said NOT to do, from climbing that tree to jumping out of that moving car, I’ve gotten a lot of cuts and scrapes. I’ve learned that through these experiences there’s a proper way to take care of cuts and scrapes. Being able to administer effective first aid does not only involve having a first aid kit at hand, but it also involves the ability to keep a clear head when confronted with these situations and the best way to keep a clear head is to know what you’re doing.

There are three things to remember while doing wound care: keep it clean, keep it dry, and keep it changed. But, he first thing you will need to do before dealing with the cut is to take the necessary precautions to prevent the spread of disease. You will want to wash your hands or apply hand sanitizer, and apply gloves if you have them. What that does is prevents the exchange of bodily fluids which can spread germs and bacteria. Next, you will want to clean the wound but before you can clean it you need to stop the bleeding. To do that, all you have to do is apply direct pressure to the wound, which will help slow the flow of bleeding and help the blood clot. Another thing you can do is put the injury above your heart, which uses gravity to slow the flow of blood. Lastly, if all those fail to help you can use pressure points which are arteries near the surface of the skin use them to restrict blood flow like garden hose. The first point is in your inner arm between your elbow and your shoulder. Another is behind the knee. And the last one is between your groin and knee. Now since the bleeding stopped you can continue to clean the wound. You will want to clean it with saline solution and gauze. You can use soap and water as well. You will want to clean the cut from the inside out, or from clean to dirty.

After properly cleaning the wound, dressing should be applied. What the dressing does is isolate the wound from any further contaminants so you don’t have any new bacteria exposed to the wound site. You can either apply gauze or a Band-Aid depending on the size of the wound. If it is something that you don’t have a big enough Band-Aid for, you can apply a piece of gauze and use medical tape and tape the edges to the skin. If it isn’t that big of a cut you can apply a Band-Aid instead. You will want to take precautions to keep it as dry as possible or there’s a possibility it will fall off. Also, increased moisture can lead to infection, which we don’t want.

Once you clean it and apply dressing you will want to monitor it everyday. After a day or so you will want to check the wound to make sure it’s healing properly. If it is bleeding through the Band-Aid or you can see any possibility of infections, you will want to change it. Also, if the wound gets dirty while changing the Band-Aid you will need to start the easy three-step process again. Some signs of infection are any redness, swelling, increased pain, fever, or pus draining from the wound.

Remember keep it clean, keep it dry, and keep it changed. If you maintain these three principles you can help reduce the risk of infection and also promote proper healing. You never know when an accident might occur but knowing these three simple steps can make a huge difference.

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