How To Respond To Illness, Injuries and Emergencies.

Knowing the difference and how to handle illness, injury or an actual emergency is something every caregiver, parent and guardian must understand.

This knowledge saves lives.

Many injuries can be avoided by being cautious, attentive and using your instincts.

While not all injuries or illness are avoidable, many require immediate medical attention.

Read on and see how you can quickly and immediately treat some of these injuries and home and also know when to seek medical attention.


This is caused either by an injury to the nose, picking the nose or dryness of the nasal membrane due to weather, allergies or illness.

So how do you treat a nosebleed?

First, you need to keep the person or baby with a nosebleed to sit up and lean forward slightly with the head tilted forward. Leaning back or tilting the head back allows the blood to run back into the sinuses and throat and can cause gagging or inhaling of blood.

The next thing is to pinch all the soft parts of the nose together between the thumb and index finger and hold firmly with pressure for up to 5 minutes. During this procedure, the baby or individual can breathe through the mouth.

Lastly, you can apply ice in a towel on the nose and cheek.

If after this first aid the nose doesn’t stop bleeding, my advice will be to seek medical assistance immediately however, you can learn more about nosebleeds from the experts.

Cuts & Scrapes

You can’t stop the children from playing at home, some rougher than others neither can you prevent an incident from happening. Good thing is, many cuts and scrapes can be safely treated at home.

The first thing you want to do when anyone gets a cut or scrape is to stop the bleeding and this can be done by applying gentle pressure with a clean cloth until the bleeding stops. Usually, minor cuts and scrapes bleeding stops on their own.

The next thing you want to do is clean the wound with running water, use a gentle soap to wash the skin around the wound and rinse well. Then apply Vaseline or any other petroleum jelly (my mother in law will always use penicillin ointment) on the wound to keep it moist and to prevent the wound from spreading.

The next step is to cover the wound with a gauze or bandage with plaster however, you can leave it open is the cut is not deep. Covering the wound keeps is clean.

Strains or Sprains

According to the medical experts a sprain is an injury to a ligament (tissue that connects two or more bones at a joint). When a sprain happens, one or more ligaments are stretched or torn while a strain is an injury to a muscle or tendon (fibrous cords of tissue that connect muscle to bone). In a strain, a muscle or tendon is stretched or torn.

Whether you have a strain or a sprain, you will usually feel pain on your bone or joint, there will be swelling in the area and you will not be able to move the affected muscle or joint.

The pain from a strain or sprain can be unbearable and the temptation will be to try to move especially when you are home alone, you might even want to try and drive to the hospital, Please DON’T!

Never move an injured person who may have injured their neck, knee, ankle, head, spine or back. This can be a sprain or a strain and the proper thing to do is call for an ambulance but considering our terrain, the next proper thing to do is call a medical professional to tell you the right thing to do.

As first aid, remember the acronym R.I.C.E

Rest- Make the person comfortable and lay or sit down

Immobilize- This means to not move. Immobilizing the affected area helps to lessen the pain and prevent further injury.

Cold- Using an ice pack or ice cubes wrapped in a towel and apply to the affected area. This helps to prevent or reduce swelling as well as pain.

Elevate- Elevate (if you can) the affected area to reduce swelling. You can use a pillow or rolled-up sweater or clothes to aid the elevation for example.


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