Festive First Aid
The festive season is upon us and at this most wonderful time of the year we are all looking forward to drinking, eating and general merriment.
For many of us much of our consumption will take place at the annual Christmas party. Letting your hair down after a long year of hard work is always great fun. However, a few too many drinks and before you know it your first aider is being called into action at the most unexpected time. Combine a little over indulgence with potentially wet or icy outdoor areas and there is a potential recipe for disaster. This is where festive first aid can come into play!
Should a colleague or friend take a tumble and sprain their ankle first and foremost remember the importance of R.I.C.E. This well-known first aid acronym stands for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation and will encourage a faster and less painful recovery period.
Rest – Rest and protection will immediately ensure no further damage can be caused.
Ice – Cold temperatures reduce pain and swelling. Applications of cold therapy for 10 – 20 minute periods are ideal and Koolpak Original Instant Ice Packs are ideal when immediate treatment is required.
Compression – Compression reduces swelling but make sure you don’t apply a bandage too tight. Check out our full range of Bandages
Elevation – Keeping the injured area above or level with your heart will stop blood flowing to the area excessively and causing further swelling.
Another Christmas tradition, particularly here in the First Aid 4 Less offices is the annual Christmas buffet. With all the great food around at Christmas keep an eye out for anyone whose eyes might be bigger than their belly….they may represent a potential choking hazard!
Should someone start chocking on food this Christmas you need to check if they can breathe or not? If they can encourage them to cough. Hopefully this should be enough to clear the obstruction after a few attempts.
If the casualty cannot talk or can no longer cough / breathe this is the time to carry out back blows. Five sharp blows between the shoulder blades using the heel of the hand should do the job. If back blows still do not work stand behind the casualty and place both arms around their abdomen. With the casualty bent slight forwards clench your hands into a fist and put them between the casualties’ navel and the bottom of the breast bone. From here pull up and in up to 5 times. This can be repeated 2 – 3 times should the obstruction still not clear. After 3 attempts (a total of 15 sharp inward and upward pulls) if the obstruction still hasn’t cleared its time to phone an ambulance.
Whilst waiting for the ambulance continue to attempt to clear the blockage until this is achieved or the point at which the casualty loses consciousness. If consciousness is lost, open the airway, check for breathing and if no breathing is identified begin CPR.
Fingers crossed you do not need to provide any emergency first aid this Christmas but if you do we hope these festive first aid tips help.
Merry Christmas, The First Aid 4 Less team.