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8 Common First Aid Mistakes to Avoid!

Dr. Hira Tanveer

2 min read

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If an injury is treated properly and promptly, it can have a large impact on recovery. However, there are some misconceptions about handling common wounds and people often end up making some mistakes. For instance, some people are inspired by old wives tales to treat injuries and burns. Learning some basic first aid could really help you making some serious mistakes in the long run. Here are some common first aid mistakes you need to avoid:

1- Leaning Back During A Nosebleed

When you tilt your head back during a nosebleed, the blood is drained into the back of your throat. This may make you cough, gag or vomit and may obstruct breathing. Instead of leaning back, you should pinch your nose to apply direct pressure; all the while keeping making sure your chin is parallel to the ground to keep your head in a neutral position. The bleeding will stop within minutes if constant pressure is applied.

2- Not Treating A Burn Properly

Instead of using butter or ice to soothe a burn, you should run burned skin under cool water. However, a few minutes will not cut it. You need to do it for 15 to 20 minutes at least. When you burn yourself, the heat goes deep into your skin and may continue to destroy tissue even if you feel you have cooled the surface. That’s why it is recommended that you run the part of the skin you have burned under cold water for nearly 15 minutes to prevent further damage.

3- Putting Heat On A Fracture

While our first instinct is to apply heat on a fracture or strain, something cold should be applied initially. Heat can make the swelling worse by boosting blood flow. On the other hand, ice can help with swelling. Heat should be reserved for other issues, such as back spasms.

4- Putting Ice On A Bruise

You should not put an ice pack directly on a bruise as extremely cold temperatures may freeze the skin and lead to damage. Try to keep a thin barrier between the ice and the ice. Instead of keeping it on constantly, remove it for 20 minutes after 20 minutes intervals.

5- Giving Soda To a Dehydrated Person

You will be doing a disfavor to a parched person by handing them a soft drink as soda contains caffeine, which can make dehydration worse. Give the person water or an electrolyte replacement drink instead. You can alternate between a glass of water and a glass of Gatorade every 15 minutes. Make sure that the patient is in a cool location. If their condition doesn’t improve after half an hour, visit a hospital.

6- Moving a seriously injured person

If you’re ever the first on the scene of a bad accident like a car wreck or devastating sports injury, you may be tempted to try to get the person moving to make sure they’re okay. Don’t do it.

According to doctors, they could have a serious spinal cord injury, and any kind of movement may result in permanent neurological damage or paralysis. The only time it is OK to move a patient like this is if there is a threat of imminent danger like a fire, explosion, or collapsing building.

Instead, call an ambulance. When you’re dealing with a potential spinal cord injury, the best move is to get EMTs there as fast as possible to transport the person to a major medical center.

7- Spitting on a cut to clean it out

While you may have heard that saliva washes away germs, it’s more like the opposite. The mouth is colonized with potentially harmful bacteria that can result in a wound infection. Another don’t: washing a wound in streams or rivers, which can leave you with a parasitic or bacterial infection.

8- Trying to make yourself sweat when you have a temperature 

When you’re ill, feeling hot when you’re shivering at the same time indicates that your body temperature is rising. When we wrap up warmly, our temperature goes up even faster. Although the heat helps us fight against infection, a body temperature that’s higher than 38°С does more harm to the body than good.

If you have a high temperature combined with the shakes, you need to get cooler rather than warmer.

If you or a loved one is in need of emergency care, visit a doctor immediately. You can find and book an appointment with top general physicians in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad through oladoc.com. You can also call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT Doctor for your health concerns.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are intended to raise awareness about common health issues and should not be viewed as sound medical advice for your specific condition. You should always consult with a licensed medical practitioner prior to following any suggestions outlined in this article or adopting any treatment protocol based on the contents of this article.

Dr. Hira Tanveer - Author Dr. Hira Tanveer is among the Best General Physicians in Lahore. Dr. Hira Tanveer is an MBBS doctor and currently serving at CMH Lahore. Writing is her favorite hobby as she loves to share professional advice on trendy healthcare issues, general well-being, healthy diet, and lifestyle.
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