Wednesday, May 23, 2012

9 Things You Should Know About First Aid Training

You have already heard about the concept of first aid, and you may even know some of the procedures used. What you may not know is that there are two types of first aid training: pre-medical and medical. The first type refers to maneuvers which can be performed by pretty much anyone, while the latter deals with more complex procedures usually performed by people with some sort of medical training. Read below to find out a few things about each type of first aid training.

Pre-medical First Aid or Basic Life Support

This type of first aid training involves a few basic, potentially life-saving gestures, meant to help a victim of an accident, trauma, or any other sort of medical emergency. Some of the techniques one can learn by attending first aid training are:

• The appropriate way of calling the 911 service and all the details you need to give in case of an accident.

• How to secure the area of an accident and avoid any further victims.

• How to stop a bleeding: through the use of a compressive bandage, or anything else you can find in your vicinity, such as a t-shirt.

• Cardio-pulmonary resuscitation - needed to be performed on anyone found unconscious, with no pulse or breathing.

• The appropriate way of transporting an injured person.

• Appropriate positioning of people found unconscious and techniques for taking someone's pulse.

• The adequate way of treating burn victims, people who have undergone electrical accidents, or drown victims.

• What to do in case someone has ingested too many pills or has swallowed a toxic substance.

• How to pull a victim out of a car without causing any further damage.

Medical First Aid or Advanced Life Support

This type of first aid training is more advanced and involves more complex procedures, which ideally should not be used by a person with no medical training. More specifically, medical first aid training involves:

• The use of a defibrillator for people in cardiac arrest.

• Ventilation instruments, administration of oxygen or oral intubation for people with difficulties breathing.

• The use of medication, usually intravenous drugs, for emergency cases.

• The use of sterile solutions and appropriate bandages and dressings for the treatment of wounds.

• Proper monitoring of blood pressure and pulse through special devices.

• Transportation of victims from the place of the accident to the ambulance with the use of stretchers.

• The use of neck collars for people who have sustained falls from heights.

• The use of intravenous fluids for stabilizing victims in shock.

These are some of the most important differences between pre-medical and medical first aid training. It is important to learn about them and to realize what your limitations are as a rescuer. Basic life support can mean the difference between life and death for a victim, but if you have any sort of medical qualification, you can definitely take it one step further and practice advanced life support techniques.