First aid is, quite literally, a matter of life and death. Whether it’s in the aftermath of an accident at work, car crash or motorcycle accident, or a slip in public, knowing what to do and when can save somebody’s life.
There are many steps and elements to first aid. However, arguably the most important is the second major step – checking for consciousness. This is something that is absolutely vital to get right as it informs and dictates what happens next.
How do I check for consciousness?
The first step when checking the state of a person’s consciousness is to approach them. If there are no visible signs, then try talking loudly and clearly, asking questions to gauge a reaction.
What if they respond?
If the victim is conscious, then you should:
– Check the victim for serious conditions, such as difficulty breathing, poor circulation, or serious bleeding.
– Always ask for permission to help
– Ask questions detailing what happened, where the most significant pain is, any experiences of numbness or tingling, as well as any known medical conditions.
– Visually check the victim, keeping a close eye out for bruises, bleeding, red or pale skin, and signs of shock.
What if there is no response?
If the work accident or otherwise injured victim shows no signs of response to verbal communication, then you need to get them into a safe position. An unconscious adult will either not be breathing or will do so in a shallow, desperate, and irregular fashion.
The acronym to remember in this situation is ABC.
A = Airway. Check the airways are clear and do a head tilt, lifting the chin. Make sure the victim has not swallowed their tongue.
B = Breathing – Look, listen and feel for no more than 10 seconds.
C = Circulation – Check for serious bleeding
Only place the victim in the recovery position if you need to leave them. Otherwise, they should be laid flat on their back with airways open.
Several kinds of accidents can cause a person to lose consciousness. Construction site accidents, for example, involving heavy tools can often lead to a person being knocked out.
Alternatively, dizzy spells can lead to fainting, and incidents on the road can damage the head.
Whatever the cause, Accident Advice Helpline can help you win the personal injury compensation you deserve thanks to a dedicated team with many years of experience in injury claims.
Date Published: January 28, 2014
Author: David Brown