Top 15 First Aid Myths

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You know, it’s astounding how many first aid myths are floating around out there. Sometimes, these misconceptions stem from training courses that have been misunderstood or even from social media posts that lack any medical guidance. It’s a slippery slope, right?

You might end up putting yourself in danger, aggravating your casualty’s condition, or worse, delaying the much-needed professional help. It’s like trying to put out a fire with gasoline. Doesn’t make sense, does it?

Now, here’s the million-dollar question: how do we tackle these false myths? Well, the answer lies in ensuring we only ever heed advice from professional sources.

Think of it as checking the label before you buy anything. You wouldn’t want to consume something harmful, would you?

Trusted organizations like Safety training, NHS, and the Health and Safety Executive are like your ‘labels’ in the world of first aid.

Ever found yourself in a situation where the information from one source contradicts another? Don’t fret! Always seek clarification, just as you’d ask your friend when you’re unsure about something. Organizations like Safety training are ever ready to solve your doubts.

And the icing on the cake? They can tap into their extensive range of trainer specialisms to offer additional clarity on overlapping areas. Imagine having a first aid query that ties in with fire safety – they’ve got you covered.

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Top 15 First Aid Myths

Myth #1:

Have you heard the first aid myth that says, “You can’t put plasters on children in case they’re allergic to them?” Truth is, there’s no such rule. Like a shield protecting a knight in a medieval battle, plasters can act as a barrier to stop bleeding and cover open wounds, minimizing the risk of infection. Now, if we know someone is allergic to plasters, wouldn’t it be clever to have hypo-allergenic ones ready to go, just like we have our favorite snacks in the pantry?

Myth #2:

“If you have a nosebleed, tilt your head back,” is another common myth. But hold on a sec, isn’t that like asking water to flow uphill?

When you tilt your head back, blood can slide down your throat, risking choking or triggering stomach irritation and vomiting. So, what’s the right way? Simple, tilt the head forward, pinch the nostrils, and breathe through the mouth, easy peasy!

Myth #3:

“Butter on burns,” now that’s a myth! If butter was a knight in a fantasy novel, burns would be its archenemy. Rather than cooling the burn, butter could heat up, increasing the damage. Imagine trying to put out fire with gasoline! The real hero in this tale? Cool running water for at least 20 minutes to cool down the burn.

Myth #4:

Let’s bust another myth: “If an unresponsive person has vomit in their mouth, scoop it out with your fingers.” It sounds practical, right? But in reality, it’s as effective as trying to empty a swimming pool with a teaspoon. Instead, like a skilled lifeguard positioning a swimmer for safety, get them into the recovery position and let gravity do its job.

Myth #5:

You’ve probably seen this in movies, “If someone feels faint, put their head between their legs.”

Seems logical? But it’s as risky as doing a headstand on a skyscraper’s edge. Why not try the safe route?

Lay them down and raise their legs, increasing blood flow to the brain just like a dam controls water flow.

Myth #6:

The myth that “Calling 112 gives the emergency services your location,” unfortunately, isn’t true. It’s like ordering a pizza without providing an address!

The emergency services still need to know where you are. Good thing we have tools like Google Maps or what3words to guide them to us.

Myth #7:

The myth that a “heart attack and cardiac arrest are the same” is a big NO. Just like apples and oranges are both fruits but different, these are distinct medical emergencies requiring different responses.

Myth 8:

The myth that “You must be trained to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED)” is as misleading as believing you need to be a chef to make a sandwich.

AEDs are designed for public use and are as straightforward as following a recipe. Once switched on, they guide you through the process. Isn’t it comforting to know that even in the most critical situations, help could be just a few instructions away?

Myth #9:

Sucking a snake bite sounds like a page straight out of an old western movie, right? But hey, this isn’t Hollywood! Sucking the venom out is as effective as using a straw to empty the ocean. The venom quickly enters the bloodstream and races towards the heart. Instead, keep the bite lower than the heart and ring up emergency medical services.

Myth #10:

Ever seen someone hyperventilating into a paper bag? It’s like trying to catch wind with a net. Not only does it not restore oxygen levels, but it could also make things worse. Instead, try the pursed-lip breathing technique and if that doesn’t work, it’s time to give the doctor a call.

Myth #11:

Tipping your head back to stop a nosebleed? That’s like trying to stop water flowing downhill. The blood can lead to choking and stomach irritation. Don’t lean back to save your favorite shirt from stains. Instead, lean forward, pinch your nose just below the bony bridge, and wait for the bleeding to stop.

Myth #12:

Peeing on a jellyfish sting. That’s not just a myth, it’s a recipe for disaster. It’s like pouring gasoline on a fire; the sting releases more venom causing more pain. Instead, rinse the sting with seawater, not freshwater. Then, use vinegar or baking soda to minimize the pain and apply an ice pack or calamine lotion for additional relief.

Myth #13:

Ice or butter on a burn is like adding fuel to the fire. Ice can cause further damage, and butter acts as an insulator, driving the burn deeper. The real solution? Run cool water over the burn and seek medical attention if it’s a serious burn.

Myth #14:

Applying heat to a sprain? That’s like trying to put out a fire with a flamethrower. It boosts blood flow, worsening the swelling. Instead, use the chill touch of ice to decrease blood flow and reduce swelling. If the swelling persists, visit your doctor.

Myth #15

Forcing something into a seizing person’s mouth is as dangerous as stepping onto a busy highway blindfolded. Instead, like a skilled lifeguard, roll the person onto their side to keep the airway open, clear any nearby hazards, and if possible, cushion their head with a pillow.

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