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Air travel health tips

Updated October 13, 2020

With summer's approach come plans for travel, including flying long distances. But the prospect of a long flight often raises health concerns. Especially in passengers who are older or have certain conditions, air travel and the related stress can have an impact on health. Here are a few trouble areas and some precautions you can take.

Deep-vein thrombosis (DVT). Not all experts agree on an association between DVT (blood clots in the legs) and air travel. Symptoms may not occur for several days, so it's difficult to establish a cause-and-effect relationship. If there is one, it's likely due to prolonged inactivity. Limited airline space can discourage moving about. Dry cabin air may also increase the risk of DVT.

Emergencies and First Aid - Birth of the Placenta

Updated February 3, 2017

Birth of the Placenta

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 woman’s 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 woman’s lower abdomen.

Emergencies and First Aid - Butterfly Bandage

Updated February 3, 2017

Butterfly Bandage

 

Standard bandages come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The butterfly bandage shown here is used to hold together the edges of a cut.
 
 

Emergencies and First Aid - Direct Pressure to Stop Bleeding

Updated February 3, 2017

Direct Pressure to Stop Bleeding

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 care
Call out for someone to get help, or call 911 yourself. Elevate the wound and apply direct pressure.

Emergencies and First Aid - How to Stop a Nosebleed

Updated February 3, 2017

How to Stop a Nosebleed

 
  1. •Firmly pinch the entire soft part of the nose just above the nostrils.
  2. •Sit and lean forward (this will ensure that blood and other secretions do not go down your throat).
  3. •Breathe through your mouth.
  4. 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.
 
 

Emergencies and First Aid - How to Make a Sling

Updated February 14, 2017

How to Make a Sling

1. To make a sling, cut a piece of cloth, such as a pillowcase, about 40 inches square. Then cut or fold the square diagonally to make a triangle. Slip one end of the bandage under the arm and over the shoulder. Bring the other end of the bandage over the other shoulder, cradling the arm.

2. Tie the ends of the bandage behind the neck. Fasten the edge of the bandage, near the elbow, with a safety pin.

 

Collar and Cuff Sling

Use a collar and cuff sling for a suspected fracture of the collarbone or elbow when a triangular sling is not available. Wrap a strip of sheet, a pants leg, or pantyhose around the wrist and tie the ends behind the neck.

Emergencies and First Aid - How to Splint a Fracture

Updated February 14, 2017

How to Splint a Fracture

 

For a lower arm or wrist fracture (left), carefully place a folded newspaper, magazine, or heavy piece of clothing under the arm. Tie it in place with pieces of cloth. A lower leg or ankle fracture (right) can be splinted similarly, with a bulky garment or blanket wrapped and secured around the limb.

A person with a hip or pelvis fracture should not be moved. If the person must be moved, the legs should be strapped together (with a towel or blanket in between them) and the person gently placed on a board, as for a back injury.

 
 
 

Emergencies and First Aid - Heimlich Maneuver on an Adult

Updated February 14, 2017

Heimlich Maneuver on an Adult



If the person is sitting or standing, stand behind him or her. Form a fist with one hand and place your fist, thumb side in, just below the person'’s rib cage in the front. Grab your fist with your other hand. Keeping your arms off the person’'s rib cage, give four quick inward and upward thrusts. You may have to repeat this several times until the obstructing object is coughed out.If the person is lying down or unconscious, straddle him or her and place the heel of your hand just above the waistline. Place your other hand on top of this hand. Keeping your elbows straight, give four quick upward thrusts. You may have to repeat this procedure several times until the obstructing object is coughed out.
 
 

Emergencies and First Aid - Heimlich Maneuver on a Child

Updated February 14, 2017

Heimlich Maneuver on a Child

Stand behind the child. With your arms around his or her waist, form a fist with one hand and place it, thumb side in, between the ribs and waistline. Grab your fist with your other hand. Keeping your arms off the child's rib cage, give four quick inward and upward thrusts. You may have to repeat this several times until the obstructing object is coughed out.
 
 

Emergencies and First Aid - Heimlich Maneuver on an Infant

Updated February 14, 2017

Heimlich Maneuver on an Infant


1 Place the infant face down across your forearm (resting your forearm on your leg) and support the infant'’s head with your hand. Give four forceful blows to the back with the heel of your hand. You may have to repeat this several times until the obstructing object is coughed out.2 If this does not work, turn the baby over. With two fingers one finger width below an imaginary line connecting the nipples, give four forceful thrusts to the chest to a depth of 1 inch. You may have to repeat this several times until the obstructing object is coughed out.
 
 

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