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Children's Health Articles
The placenta, which has provided the fetus with nourishment, is attached to the umbilical cord and is delivered about 20 minutes after the baby. Do not pull on the cord; delivery of the placenta occurs on its own. You can help by gently massaging the womans lower abdomen. The uterus will feel like a hard round mass.
Massaging the abdomen helps the uterus contract, which also helps stop bleeding. After the placenta is delivered, place it in a plastic bag to take with the woman and baby to the hospital. It is normal for more bleeding to occur after delivery of the placenta. Continue gently massaging the womans lower abdomen.
When you are alone and have to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), your primary effort should be compressing the chest to help the person's heart pump blood. If there is a second person helping, providing breaths can be done at the same time as compressions are performed.
The brief review of CPR on the following pages can help you in an emergency; however, this information should not take the place of a certified course in CPR.
Immediate care Assess the situation. Call out for someone to get help or call 911 yourself if the person does not seem to need immediate assistance. You can determine this by gently shaking the person and asking in a loud voice, "Are you OK?" If there is no response, begin CPR and continue until help arrives.
A person who is choking will instinctively grab at the throat. The person also may panic, gasp for breath, turn blue, or be unconscious. If the person can cough or speak, he or she is getting air. Nothing should be done.
Immediate careIf the person cannot cough or speak, begin the Heimlich maneuver immediately to dislodge the object blocking the windpipe. The Heimlich maneuver creates an artificial cough by forcing the diaphragm up toward the lungs.
If you are choking and alone, you can perform the Heimlich maneuver on yourself by giving yourself abdominal thrusts. Or position yourself over the back of a chair or against a railing or counter and press forcefully enough into it so that the thrust dislodges the object.
A wound that is deep, bleeding heavily, or has blood spurting from it (caused by bleeding from an artery), may not clot and may not stop bleeding.
Immediate careCall out for someone to get help, or call 911 yourself. Elevate the wound and apply direct pressure.
If severe bleeding does not stop with direct pressure and elevation, apply direct pressure to an artery. Use direct pressure on an artery along with elevation and direct pressure on the wound. There are specific major arteries in the body where pressure should be placed (see illustration below).
Write down important telephone numbers and post them where you can refer to them easily, such as near your telephone or on your refrigerator. List the serious medical conditions (such as asthma or diabetes) of each family member on the back of the list. Teach your children how to call 911 and tell them to show the list to emergency medical personnel.
The list should include the phone numbers of the police, the nearest fire department, ambulance services, a poison control center, and your doctors and the contact numbers for work, other locations, and a nearby relative or friend. You may also wish to include the phone numbers of the gas and electric companies, your childrens schools, the local pharmacy, or home health aides.
Firmly pinch the entire soft part of the nose just above the nostrils.
Sit and lean forward (this will ensure that blood and other secretions do not go down your throat).
Breathe through your mouth.
Hold this position for 5 minutes. If bleeding continues, hold the position for an additional 10 minutes. If bleeding does not stop, go to the emergency department.
A person with a serious medical condition such as diabetes, a drug allergy, or a heart condition should carry information about the condition on a necklace or bracelet, or on a card that can be carried in a pocket or wallet, so that proper care can be given in an emergency.
Be sure to check for a medallion or card if you find yourself in the role of rescuer. If you or a member of your family has a life-threatening medical condition, obtain a medical identification tag or medallion from your local pharmacy and wear it at all times.
Place the child on a hard, flat surface.
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