Sever bleeding can cause death quickly so you must act fast. Grab a bandage, gauze pad, piece of cloth, or whatever is handy and apply firm pressure. Raise the limb above the body and if necessary apply pressure to the arterial pressure point on the inside of the arm or groin, which ever applies. If the cloth becomes soaked in blood add more and reapply pressure, do not remove the soaked bandage. In extreme cases a tourniquet may need to be applied.
- To make a tourniquet, IF needed (A tourniquet MUST be a last resort! The casualty should be at risk of bleeding to death before you consider applying a tourniquet.) first fold a piece of cloth or bandana into a triangle. Roll the triangle until you have a long “tail”. Tie the roll between the injury and the heart as close to the wound as possible but above the knee or elbow using an overhand knot, the first step in tying your shoelaces. Place a strong stick on top of the knot and tie another overhand knot. Twist the stick until the bleeding stops and secure the bandage by tying the ends of the bandage around the injured limb. Write the time you applied the tourniquet elsewhere on the victim’s body in pen or marker. Splint the limb to prevent accidental movement which may cause the wound to reopen. Check the wound every ten minutes by loosening the tourniquet to see if the blood has clotted. If so remove the tourniquet and clean the wound, if not re-tighten and look again in another ten minutes.
Scrapes and cuts:
These are the simplest to cure. Clean the site with soap and clean water; if no soap is available water will have to work. Next apply an appropriately sized adhesive bandage. Remember to change the bandage at least everyday and also give the injury some time to “breathe” by leaving it uncovered for a while each day. One of the best times to let a wound breath is while you are sleeping, this is the time that the wound is least likely to get dirty.