First Aid Skills you should know
5 First Aid Skills that everyone should learn
At Cornwall Training we provide a range of formal First Aid Training regulated courses to meet the needs for all businesses. So we thought we would share some basic First Aid Skills knowledge from our First Aid courses
It has been proven that basic skills done well save lives. Our First Aid Training courses teach the basics you need to save a life.
For businesses its important to have qualified First Aiders to meet the needs of the staff and to comply with the HSE regulations
1) Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
If there is one First Aid Skill you should learn then it would undoubtedly be CPR. When we teach people how to do CPR on a First Aid at Work course, We really try to convey to people that it may not be a co-worker that you do it on. Cardiac Arrests (SCA) can happen anytime and anywhere so it could be a family member or friend that requires your help.
What is Cardiac Arrest? In simple terms, it’s when someone’s heart stops. The heart may still be moving (for a short period of time) but it won’t be beating. This is the reason why we do CPR. Blood needs to be moved around the body and in particular, the brain needs to be perfused with oxygen. Also, if there is an electrical fault with the heart, CPR will hopefully also maintain the electrical conductivity of the heart, keeping it in a rhythm that a defibrillator can shock.
If we are being brutally honest, the odds are stacked are massively stacked against you. If it comes to the point where someone has stopped breathing and they are in Cardiac Arrest then things are pretty bad. There is hope though, people do survive. Their survival is largely attributed to the actions of bystanders that recognise the situation for what it is, call for help, provide good quality First Aid Skills in CPR and if possible, defibrillation. When the Ambulance Service arrives they can provide Advanced Life Support, then convey to the patient to definitive medical care.
2) The Recovery Position
Simple First Aid Skills can save lives and the recovery position is an example of that. By rolling someone onto their side we help maintain an airway. We often hear the airway referred to as the “Wind Pipe”. It’s the route air takes to get in and out of your lungs and this includes oxygen which is integral to life.
When is it used? It’s used for people that are unconscious and breathing normally. If we leave unconscious people on their back they are significantly at risk to have their airway compromised by two things, in particular, their own tongue and the contents of their stomach.
The human tongue is anchored to the lower jaw. When someone is unconscious, all the muscles in the body relax which includes the tongue this is also muscle. As the tongue relaxes it rolls over the entrance of the larynx which means that the person in question won’t be able to breathe. They asphyxiate, if left, this will lead to cardiac arrest.
The other issue with leaving an unconscious person on their back is that they may regurgitate. This occurs because the small valve that keeps the food being digested in the stomach also relaxes which allows anything within the stomach to transit up the oesophagus. This then poses a significant problem because when it pools in the upper airway, it can then sucked into the lungs as the unconscious person takes a breath. If this continues to happen, they casualty will drown on their own stomach contents.
3) How to deal with choking.
There are approximately 66 million people living in the United Kingdom. Most of us eat every day and normally more than once! What this means is that there is a possibility someone around you may choke. High-risk groups include anyone with a physical or learning disability, small children, babies and elderly folks with conditions such as dementia.
Choking occurs when something, normally food, gets stuck in your airway. At the back of your mouth is a flap of cartilage called the Epiglottis. When you swallow, it covers your airway which allows food to fall into the oesophagus and down into the stomach.
When you speak, you breathe, which means your Epiglottis is not covering your airway. If you happen to be speaking at the same time, you may choke.
A bit of advice, don’t talk with your mouth full!
4) How to stop someone from bleeding.
There are a lot of First Aid myths of there about what you should and shouldn’t do if someone is bleeding. We find it scary when people tell us that they have been taught on previous courses. We ensure that all of our tutors teach from the latest guidelines.
There are a variety of ways to stop someone from bleeding, it all depends on where the injury is, the size of it, the shape and most importantly, whether an artery or major vein has been affected.
The key to stopping someone from bleeding is by educating yourself on the subject and having the right kit to deal with the problem. “But how do I do this?” we hear you shout… Cornwall Training & Consultancy can show you and provide you with the tools to get the job done.
5) Learn to stay calm.
It’s easier said than done. The default setting for most people in emergency situations is to panic. How to people learn not to panic? If you watch how soldiers react to incoming fire, it will be very different from how unarmed, untrained civilians would behave. What enables soldiers to respond to incidents in this way is training and also repeated exposure to it. You could relate that same idea to the Emergency Services.
The tricky thing about First Aid is that most First Aiders within the workplace don’t get much or any exposure to incidents (which is a positive thing) due to good risk management. Our advice to anyone with regards to staying calm is to learn your guidelines, learn the methods and procedures to deal with things. Knowledge is power and although you may be a bit shaky, the information will be there and without realising it, it will come out. Sometimes a bit of pressure brings out the best in people.
So are you ready to learn to save a life? Call, email or book online now to book your course.
We look forward to seeing you on your course.