First Aid for the 8 Most Common Home Accidents

First Aid for the 8 Most Common Home Accidents

First aid

Knowing what to do in the face of the most common domestic accidents can not only reduce the severity of the accident, but also save a life.

The accidents that most frequently happen at home are burns, nosebleeds, poisoning, cuts, electric shocks, falls, suffocation and bites. Therefore, see how to act in the face of each type of accident and what to do to avoid them:

1. Burns

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Burns can appear due to prolonged exposure to the sun or heat sources, such as fire or boiling water, for example, and what should be done includes:

  1. Place the affected area under cold water for 15 minutes, in the case of hot objects, or apply aloe vera cream, in the case of sunburn;
  2. Avoid rubbing any type of product, such as butter or oil;
  3. Do not pierce blisters that may appear on burned skin.

Read more at: First aid for burns.

When it can be serious: if it is larger than the palm of your hand or when it does not cause any type of pain. In these cases, it is recommended to call medical help, calling 192, or going to the emergency room.

How to avoid: Avoid sun exposure between 11 am and 4 pm and use sunscreen, as well as keep objects that could cause burns away from children.

2. Nosebleed

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Nose bleeding is not normally a serious condition and can be caused when you blow your nose too hard, pick your nose or suffer a blow, for example.

To stop the bleeding you must:

  1. Sit and tilt your head forward;
  2. Pinch your nostrils with your thumb and forefinger for at least 10 minutes;
  3. After stopping the bleeding, clean your nose and mouth, without applying pressure, using a compress or cloth wet with warm water;
  4. Do not blow your nose for at least 4 hours after your nose bleeds.

Find out more at: First aid for a bloody nose.

When it can be serious: if other symptoms such as dizziness, fainting or bleeding from the eyes and ears appear. In these cases, you should call an ambulance, calling 192, or go to the emergency room immediately.

How to avoid: Do not stay exposed to the sun for a long time or to very high temperatures, as the heat dilates the veins in the nose, making bleeding easier.

3. Intoxication or poisoning

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Poisoning is more common in children due to accidental ingestion of medicines or cleaning products that are within their reach. In these cases, what should be done immediately is:

  1. Call medical help by dialing 192;
  2. Identify the source of poisoning;
  3. Keep the victim calm until medical help arrives.

See more at: First aid for poisoning.

When it can be serious: Any type of poisoning is a serious situation and, therefore, medical help must be called immediately.

How to avoid: Products that can cause poisoning must be kept locked and out of the reach of children.

4. Cortes

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Cuts can be caused by sharp objects, such as a knife or scissors, as well as piercing objects, such as nails or needles, for example. First aid includes:

  1. Press the area with a clean cloth;
  2. Wash the area with saline solution or soap and water, after stopping the bleeding;
  3. Cover the wound with a sterile dressing;
  4. Avoid removing objects that are piercing the skin;
  5. Call 911 or go to the emergency room if there are objects piercing the skin.

When it can be serious: if the cut is caused by rusty objects or when the bleeding is very large and difficult to stop.

How to avoid: Objects that can cause cuts must be kept out of the reach of children and must be used with care and attention by adults.

5. Electric shock

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Electric shocks are more common in children due to the lack of protection in wall sockets at home, however, they can also happen when using a household appliance in poor condition, for example. What should be done in these cases is:

  1. Turn off the general power supply;
  2. Move the victim away from the electrical source using wooden, plastic or rubber objects;
  3. Lay the victim down to avoid falls and fractures after the electric shock;
  4. Call an ambulance by calling 192.

See more about what to do in: First aid for electric shock.

When it can be serious: when skin burns, constant tremors or fainting appear, for example.

How to avoid: Electronic devices must be maintained in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions, as well as avoid using or connecting electrical sources with wet hands. Furthermore, if there are children at home, it is recommended to protect the wall sockets to prevent children from inserting their fingers into the electrical current.

6. Falls

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Falls generally happen when people trip or slip on rugs or wet floors. However, they can also happen when riding a bicycle or standing on a tall object, such as a chair or stepladder.

First aid for falls includes:

  1. Calm the victim and observe the presence of fractures or bleeding;
  2. Stop bleeding, if necessary, by applying pressure to the area with a clean cloth or gauze;
  3. Wash and apply ice to the affected area.

Read more about what to do if you fall at: What to do after a fall.

When it can be serious: if the person falls on their head, has excessive bleeding, breaks a bone or has symptoms such as vomiting, dizziness or fainting. In these cases, you should call an ambulance, calling 192, or go to the emergency room immediately.

How to avoid: you should avoid standing on tall or unstable objects, as well as wearing shoes that fit well, for example.

7. Choking

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Asphyxiation is usually caused by choking, which can most often occur when eating or swallowing small objects, such as a pen cap, toys or coins, for example. First aid in this case is:

  1. Hit the victim 5 times in the middle of the back, keeping your hand open and moving quickly from bottom to top;
  2. Perform the Heimlich maneuver if the person continues to choke. To do this, you must hold the victim from behind, wrap your arms around the torso and apply pressure with a clenched fist on the pit of the stomach. See how to do the maneuver correctly;
  3. Call medical help by calling 911 if the person continues to choke after the maneuver.

See also what to do in case of choking: What to do if someone chokes.

When it can be serious: when the victim has been unable to breathe for more than 30 seconds or has a bluish face or hands. In these cases, you should call an ambulance or go immediately to the emergency room to receive oxygen.

How to avoid: It is advisable to chew your food correctly and avoid eating very large pieces of bread or meat, for example. Furthermore, you should also avoid putting small objects in your mouth or offering toys with small parts to children.

8. Bites

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Bites or stings can be caused by various types of animals, such as dogs, bees, snakes, spiders or ants and, therefore, treatment may vary. However, first aid for bites is:

  1. Call medical help by calling 192;
  2. Lay the victim down and keep the affected region below the level of the heart;
  3. Wash the bite area with soap and water;
  4. Avoid using a tourniquet, sucking the venom or squeezing the bite site.

Find out more in: First aid in case of a bite.

When it can be serious: Any type of bite can be serious, especially when caused by venomous animals. Therefore, it is always advised to go to the emergency room to evaluate the bite and begin appropriate treatment.

How to avoid: It is recommended to place nets on windows and doors to prevent venomous animals from entering the home.