Children can get themselves into various situations especially during the holidays. Here are our Top 10 First Aid tips……
1. Make sure you have a well stocked first aid kit with you for days out
Gloves, plasters, a selection of different sized bandages, alcohol free wipes etc
2. Try to remain calm
Children react to stress and anxiety
3. Determine if the accident warrants a visit to hospital
Remember a noisy child is a good sign! If stitches are needed visit your local minor injuries unit but if the casualty is unconscious call 999 or 112.
4. Dealing with Choking
Try to resist from putting your fingers into a child or baby’s mouth as you may push the object further into the windpipe. Stand to the side of the child and lean them forward using your arm as a support (lie them over your knee if it’s a baby). Use the heel of your hand to give a ‘Back Blow’ in between the child or baby’s shoulder blades. Remember your ‘Back Blow’ needs to be hard in order to remove the blockage. Check the child or baby’s mouth and the floor after each ‘Back Blow’.
Treating a choking child or baby should only really be done by First Aid trained personnel!!!!
5. Dealing with a bleed
Sit the child down, examine the wound, elevate the injury and apply pressure to stop the bleeding. If bleeding lasts for more than 20 – 30 minutes, consult the emergency services.
6. Dealing with Foreign Objects
Do not be tempted to pull a foreign object out of a wound, always consult the emergency services. Use a blunt edge (ie: bank / store card etc) to remove things like splinters and bee stings by gently swiping it over the wound to knockout the splinter or sting.
7. Head Injuries
All head injuries in children are counted as serious but remember if the lump is on the outside it’s a good thing. Apply a cold compress to reduce the swelling. You know your child better than anyone so if they are reacting in a different way to normal call 999. DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO FALL INTO A DEEP SLEEP, wake them every 10 minutes to assess their alert levels.
If your child falls to the floor and starts to shake violently DO NOT restrain them. Move any dangers out of the way, time how long the seizure lasts and if it’s their first seizure call 999.
9. Always treat for Shock
Every casualty will go into Shock as it’s the body’s way of dealing with different situations. Look out for pale, cold, clammy skin, their breathing will become fast and shallow and their alert levels will start to reduce. To make them feel more comfortable, lie them down with their legs slightly raised. If they are struggling to breathe sit them on the floor leaning up against something solid like a wall or another person. If they become unconscious call 999.
10. Recovery Position
The Recovery Position, where the casualty is positioned on their side allows the airway to remain open whilst the casualty is unconscious. This position is also known as the Safe Airway Position. It looks very similar to the way most of us sleep making it easy to remember.
Never leave a casualty on their back as they may choke on their own vomit!
If you would like to learn more about first aid for children, why not complete one of our Parents First Aid Courses. Informal, friendly sessions delivered in the comfort of your own home or as part of a group. Contact us today for more information!