General Health

What to do when…

Sometimes what stands between life and death of a loved one is knowledge. It’s important to know what to do and what not to do when a loved one or neighbour is faced with a life threatening situation.

First Aid for Burns:

Injuries from fire outbreak come in different degrees and severity depending on the nature of the fire incidence. Having the right knowledge and acting fast is essential.
Stop, Drop and roll are key words for fire injuries.
Stop: stop moving
Drop: drop to the ground
Roll: roll on the floor.
This usually should help to put out the fire. Rush cool water over the affected area for about 10mins then
get a clean plastic bag or clean film and cover the area loosely while you rush the affected person(s) to the nearest hospital

Do not:
1. Do not apply herbs or concoctions to injury
2. Do not rub hard on the surface of the injury
3. Do not apply fuel or any other chemical to the site of injury

First Aid for someone who has been in an accident
First things first, stabilize the head and neck then get assistance to move the victim’s body as a single unit making sure the head and neck don’t move, bend or twist as this could injure or complicate injury to the cervical vertebrae resulting in paralysis.
Use hands, blankets or whatever material available to immobilize head and neck.
Reassure victim until he or she can be taken to the nearest Hospital.
Do not try to elevate head or give food to eat or drink.
Stop bleeding as much as possible. 

First Aid to control heavy bleeding
Protect yourself first by wearing gloves if available.
If victim’s clothing is covering the wound, remove or cut the clothing to expose bleeding point.
If there is an object in it, don’t remove it as it might be acting as a plug to control bleeding.
Next, apply direct pressure to the point either with your fingers or a clean cloth, this should help stop the bleeding. Maintain pressure over the area either by tying a clean cloth firmly over the area or using your hands.
Rush casualty to the nearest hospital.

First Aid for Choking
This happens when a foreign object gets lodged in the windpipe (the throat). In adults, it’s usually food and with children, it could be any foreign object.
In the event of this, the Red Cross recommends a five and five approach:

Give five back blows with the heel of your hand in between the person’s shoulder blades. Aim for the center between both scapula and hit hard.


Give five abdominal thrusts. An effective abdominal thrust is done by standing behind the person and wrapping your arms around the person’s waist.
Then make one of your hands into a fist and grab the fist with the other hand and bend over a hard surface, maybe a table and shove your fist inwards and upwards.
Repeat the cycle if the object isn’t dislodged but ensure the person is taken to the nearest hospital as soon as possible.

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Dr. Thelma Okafor
Dr Thelma Okafor, a Medical Doctor is passionate about having a healthier Nation with accessible health care and citizens who are proactive about their health. She enjoys reading, writing and engaging in intellectually stimulating discussions. When she isn’t practising medicine, she likes to watch movies, explore the outdoors or lounge with friends.

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1 Comment

  1. Nice one chief. Keep them coming

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