ABC’s of First Aid | Narayana Health – My Blog


How to Administer First Aid?

First aid is immediate medical care given to a sick or injured patient. In rare instances, the patient can relieve from life-threatening events just by getting first aid. Commonly first aid aims to keep a patient alive until the prescribed treatment facilities are available. 

Why knowing about First Aid is critical?

  1. It can save lives.
  2. It can give instant pain relief.
  3. It can prevent the spread of infection.
  4. A person who is familiar with first aid can communicate with the healthcare provider in a better way
  5. If your coworker knows first aid, you feel safer 
  6. If parents know the first aid techniques, the children are comparatively safer.
  7. A prompt first aid may reduce recovery time 
  8. First aid can decrease a lot of medical costs of treatment by reducing complications. 

The best way to prepare for these events is to get official first aid training. But till then, let us try to learn how to handle different medical emergencies. 

Let’s begin with understanding the ABC of first aid.

ABC of First Aid:

For someone unresponsive, first, try to know ABC. 

ABC stands for airway, breathing, and circulation.

  • Airway: Try to find out whether someone is breathing. If not, clear the person’s airway.
  • Breathing: Even after clearing the airway, if a person is not respiring, give rescue breathing. 
  • Circulation: With rescue breathing, do chest compressions to restore blood circulation. Still, if the person is not responsive, check the pulse. If the patient’s heart has stopped, perform chest compressions.

There is one more simple version of ABC.

  • Awake: Awake the patients. If they are responding, call the medical emergency number.
  • Breathing: If a patient is unconscious and not breathing, immediately start rescue breathing and chest compressions. 
  • Continue care: Follow the instructions given by the medical emergency.

How to deal with different emergencies?

Condition 1: Stopped Heart

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is the most critical emergency medical procedure that everyone should know. 

If a patient’s heart is not beating, performing CPR can save that life. 

Condition 2: Bleeding

If the injured person is bleeding, first try to figure out the color of the blood and the origin of the bleeding. Bleeding can be from:

  • Capillaries: Bleeding from these is like a trickle. Such bleeding stops on its own. 
  • Veins: Bleeding from veins is continuous and of dark red color. It can be anything from mild to severe. 
  • Arteries: In arterial bleeding, bright red color spur out. Blood loss can be huge by arterial bleeding.

Follow these steps to control bleeding:

  • Wear disposable gloves
  • Rinse the wound 
  • Cover the wound with a clean cloth or gauze 
  • To stop the blood flow, apply direct pressure on the wound
  • Elevate the bleeding part above the patient’s head if possible
  • If the bleeding stops, Put a bandage on the wound

Condition 3: Choking

When any food or object blocks the trachea, choking may happen. Choking can cause sudden unconsciousness or even death. Some common signs of choking are:

  • Gagging
  • Gasping
  • Wheezing
  • Inability to talk 
  • Bluish discoloration of the face 
  • Grabbing the throat

Use the Heimlich maneuver if a person is choking. Remember, if a person is talking or coughing, they are not choking. 

Condition 4: Burns

First, stop the burning process by identifying the type of burn and take the actions such as: 

  • Clean the chemical in case of chemical burning
  • Turn off electricity in case of electric burn and so on. 

For mild burns:

  • Flush the burned area with running water. Avoid using ice.
  • Put a light gauze bandage on the burnt area if it is minor.
  • Never break any blisters formed by burning.

Condition 5: Broken Bone or Fracture

We should consider any injury causing pain and swelling in limbs, hands, and feet as a potential broken bone until the X-ray says otherwise. A prompt first aid can help stabilize the broken bone till you are not reaching the hospital. 

Remember whatever the condition is it is always better to call medical helpline in case of any emergency.

It is always better to receive formal training in first aid techniques. First aid training may help you make the right choice if you or your loved ones encounter any medical emergency. Even if you do not have any first aid training, it is always better to learn ABC and how to perform CPR.

First aid techniques can be a lifesaver, and we should be aware of these.



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