As discussed in my last blog post, it takes many required steps to help save someone in an emergency situation. If you want to be able to save someone’s life you have to know how to stop the bleeding when they have a major wound so that they don’t lose to much blood and bleed to death.
When stopping a bleeding wound, you first have to see where the blood is coming from. Once you find where the wound is, you then have to apply direct pressure with your fingers or hand to help stop the bleeding. If the bleeding isn’t stopping, you should elevate the wound is possible while continuing to apply pressure.
The next step is to dress the wound with gauze or bandaging or the cleanest cloth on hand. Tie it tightly so it had good pressure on the wound. Every time the blood soaks through, keep applying new bandages or cloth over the old dressings. If this is failing to work, you should try and locate a pressure point nearest the wound and apply pressure
If all of this fails, then the last step is to fashion a tourniquet. A tourniquet is a device that can be twisted and constricted tightly to cut off blood flow to the area.
To apply a tourniquet:
- If the victim is still wearing clothes, smooth the fabric of the sleeve or pants before putting the tourniquet on.
- Put the tourniquet band above the wound area.
- Make a half-knot as if beginning to tie a shoelace.
- Put a stick or other ridged object on top of the half-knot and the finishing making the knot so the twisting object wont come loose.
- Twist the stick until the tourniquet is tight and you see the bleeding subsided.
While doing all this be sure to keep monitoring the victims breathing and heart rate.
Try to expose the area where you suspect the broken bone to be and loosen any clothing or remove anything that might be causing pressure to the broken bone area.
To stabilize the fracture, apply a splint. This split helps to minimize movement to the fractures bone. You can make a splint with a pole, stick, or plank of wood and just tie it in place with strips of clothing or a belt.
Shock is when blood isn’t flowing properly and the heart usually isn’t functioning properly. Some signs that someone may be in shock are:
- Sweaty but cool (clammy) skin
- Pale Skin
- Restlessness, nervousness
- Loss of blood (bleeding)
- Confusion (or loss of awareness)
- Faster-than-normal breathing rate
- Blotchy or Bluish skin (especially around the mouth and lip)
- Nausea and/or vomiting
To prevent shock, have the person lie down on their backs and elevate their feet higher than the heart and loosing any tight clothing. If the person is unconscious, put their head to the side to prevent them from chocking on their vomit.
In any situation like this, you must show no fear or panic by having confidence. These are just a few more steps to help save lives. Saving a persons life is not easy, but we need more people to be educated on saving people’s lives so that when we come into emergency situations people will be able to help in a calm way. This Navy Seal Survival Guide is a really good guide to help in many different kinds of emergency situations.
Courtley, C. (2012). SEAL survival guide: A Navy SEAL’s secrets to surviving any disaster. New York: Gallery Books.