Basic first aid is essential knowledge in any household. It can help you cope in an emergency, can prevent a medical condition from worsening and can even save a life. From how to treat a bite or sting, right through to CPR it is crucial that everyone knows the fundamentals, and is taught them from an early age.
What is first aid?
First aid is simply the help given to a sick or injured person until full medical treatment is available. It can refer to everything from the basics of treating minor irritations to ABC’s of resuscitation (airways, breathing & CPR). It’s important that in an emergency, that you call for help as soon as it is safe to do so by dialing 000.
According to St Johns Australia, DRSABCD stands for:
D – DANGER Ensure the area is safe for yourself, others and the patient.
R – CHECK for response—ask name—squeeze shoulders. If the patient does not respond, send for help. If the patient is responsive, make them comfortable, check for injuries and monitor their response.
S – SEND for help. Call Triple Zero (000) for an ambulance or ask another person to make the call.
A – AIRWAY. Open mouth—if foreign material is present:
Place in the recovery position.
Clear airway with fingers.
Open airway by tilting head with chin lift.
B – BREATHING. Check for breathing—look, listen and feel.
If the patient is breathing normally, place them in the recovery position, monitor their breathing, manage their injuries and check for shock.
If the patient is not breathing normally, start CPR.
C – CPR. Start CPR—30 chest compressions: 2 breaths Continue CPR until help arrives or patient recovers.
D – DEFIBRILLATION – Apply defibrillator if available and follow voice prompts.
Basic First Aid Kit Contents
It’s important to keep an at home first aid kit at hand for life’s little accidents. Ensure you keep it well stocked and easily available, but out of reach of children.
A number of completed first aid kits are available for purchase via first aid training providers and pharmacies. A basic first aid kit should contain:
Plastic adhesive dressings like Rapaid® Dressing strips
A triangular bandage
Antiseptic such as no-touch mundicare® Antiseptic Spray
Hydrogel for burns such as mundicare® Burnaid® gel.
Notebook and pen
Crepe bandages of varying widths
Non-stick adhesive dressings of various widths like mundicare® Woundaid® dressings
Cream for bites & stings such as mundicare® itch relief
Resuscitation mask or face shield.
Tubes of saline solution to wash eyes and irrigate wounds