Preventing Medical EmergenciesMake text bigger | Make text smaller
”We never thought it could happen to us,” this is the commonest response of the people that face an earthquake, fire, or even a medical emergency. They may also wonder if it could be prevented. The answer is”yes.” In fact, much of what will happen in any emergency, including medical emergencies, can be predicted. By acquiring the required knowledge, you will be able to anticipate the types of hazards that threaten your safety or life, think of ways to mitigate the impacts and develop a preparedness plan.Here we show you how to prevent and prepare for medical emergencies:
What is a medical emergency?
A medical emergency occurs when you consider a situation as a threat to your or someone else’s life or limb;therefore,there is a desperate need for immediate medical care to prevent death or severe injuries. It may include severe pain, bad injuries or a deteriorating medical condition.
To prevent a medical emergency, you have to follow these recommendations:
- Your first priority should always be safety which is obtainable by using your common sense, practicing caution and doing what the safety instructions tell you to do.
- Follow a sensible diet.
- Exercise regularly if your doctor has told you it is safe for you. Exercising may reduce your risk of depression, heart diseases or other illnesses.
- To reduce the risk of osteoporosis and strengthen your bones, take calcium and vitamin D supplements and eat a nutritious diet.
- Get a cholesterol test at least every 5 years, as high cholesterol can cause other life-threatening problems such as heart diseases.
- Have a doctor check your eyes and ears annually.
- Ask your doctor to give you a diabetes test, especially if you have a relative with the disease, if you are overweight or if you always feel hungry or thirsty.
- Check to see whether you or your family members are in peril of any life-threatening medical conditions that may be linked to factors such as lifestyle or genetics; if so, follow your doctor’s advice.
- Take your blood pressure regularly: along with memorizing so many numbers in your business, keep your few health numbers, especially your blood pressure, in mind. They can determine life or Do not forget, high blood pressure is a “silent killer.”
- Get a flu shot every year.
- Be aware of the side effects and possible interactions with drugs you are taking. Blood thinners and diabetes drugs resulted in the most emergency room visits for drug reactions among elderly, according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2011. Drugs that affect alertness such as sleeping aids can increase the risk of falls.
- To avoid falling, wear comfortable footwear proper for the activity and the weather.Fall-proof your home. You have to know the risks caused by certain diseases such as Parkinson’s disease or stroke.These can lead to a fall.Have a plan for who to call if you fall. It could be a relative or friend, or a medical alarm service. Wear a “panic button” that calls automatically for help when you are not able to do so. Medical alert jewelry can notify others about your health concern. These devices will inform the doctors of the life-threatening condition. You can see different medical alert systems such as GPS medical alert,fall detection system etc.
- Find the safety hazards in your place and eliminate them.
- Keep first-aid kits at places such as your home and
- Put emergency numbers near the phone.
- Have your medical information including a history of serious diseases, surgeries, and hospitalizations.
- Have a list of your regular doctors available to take to the emergency department.
- Prepare a list of the drugs you take and their dosages. If you have an allergy to a drug, that should also be mentioned. Keep the list available to take to the emergency department.
- Add I.C.E. or “In Case of Emergency” contact names and phone numbers to your cell phone address book. This should include someone who is close to you and can tell your medical history to emergency responders. They are using them to notify the person’s emergency contacts and obtain critical medical information when you arrive unconscious.
- Carry a summary of your medical history in your wallets well including your current medications, allergies, and doctors.
- Complete medical consent forms for your family, which will permit someone to authorize treatment in an emergency situation when you’re unable to give consent.
- Take a first aid class and learn CPR: learning how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) saves lives. According to the American Heart Association, about 918 US citizens die each day of coronary heart disease without being hospitalized. Conventional CPR comprises chest compression’s and artificial respiration. Your local hospital may conduct courses in your district or can guide you to the related organizations.
- Learn to use automatic external defibrillators: a victim’s best chance for survival is when there is a revival within the first 4 minutes. An automated external defibrillator is a small device used to create an electric shock to reestablish the normal rhythm of victims with a sudden cardiac arrest. AEDs are most effective when standards are in place. Anyone trained to use CPR can be trained to use an AED. The more people respond to medical emergencies and trained to use AEDs the fewer deaths from sudden cardiac arrest.
- Keep the phone number of the Poison Control Center hotline 800-222-1222 at home and work. If someone have been poisoned, you can call an expert who will provide immediate advice.
- Put the necessary medical information in the glove compartment of your car.
- Fasten your seat belts in motor vehicles.
- If you drink alcohol, drink in a restrained manner. Never drink and drive.
- Wear a helmet and safety pads when bicycling.
- Don’t smoke.
- Warm up before sports.
- Use safety equipment while playing sports.
- Make your own plan for medical emergencies.
Some tips for a healthy travel:
- Prepare a medical folder including a photocopy of your health insurance card.
- Keep a list of your prescription drugs, current medical conditions, immunizations and blood type.
- Put together another contact sheet of people in case of a medical emergency to carry in your wallet.
- Have a prescription for your contact lenses and eyeglasses.
- Keep all your needed drugs in your carry-on luggage when you fly.
- Have your prescriptions in your wallet.
- Prepare a travel health kit that includes medications, bandages, antibiotic ointments, and antiseptic wipes.
- If you have an implantable defibrillator, pacemaker or stent keep its characteristics on a small card in your wallet.
- If you’re headed overseas, join IAMAT, a nonprofit organization that provides health information to doctors worldwide.
- Check whether your health insurance plan covers medical problems abroad.
- Sitting for long periods, whether in a plane, bus or car increase the risk of forming blood clots in your leg or thigh. Take a break every 3 hours to walk around.
Some tips for avoiding medical emergencies at work:
- First, prepare a list of emergency contacts for all your colleagues.
- If you have a chronic medical condition consider telling a colleague what to do in an emergency.
- Ask your employer to provide a first aid course for all employees.
- Keep a complete first aid kit.
- Be sure your office has an automated external defibrillator.
Learn the warning signs of a medical emergency:
- Shortness of breath, difficulty breathing
- A fast heartbeat (more than 120) at rest
- Fainting, sudden dizziness, and weakness
- Inability to speak
- Numbness, or weakness of any part of the body
- Abrupt blindness or vision changes
- Blood in vomit
- Unusual bleeding
- Coughing blood
- Lasting chest pain
- Unexpected severe pain
- Severe allergic reaction
- Extensive burns
- Drug overdose
- Suicidal or homicidal feelings
- Mental status alterations, very odd behavior
- Apparent broken bones
- Abnormal stomachache
Needless to say that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” By conducting the above-mentioned preventive measures, you can reduce the chance of a medical emergency happening. Therefore, start making your own plan and enjoy your long sweet life!