First Aid Treatment for Wounds

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The first aid treatment for wounds varies depending on the type of wound, as bruises, cuts, lacerations and scrapes each require different treatment. Discover the different ways to treat a wound with helpful information from a public safety chief in this free video on first aid.

Part of the Video Series: First Aid Basics
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Video Transcript

Hello, my name is Chip, and I'm a paramedic instructor for the state of North Carolina, and we're here today to talk about first-aid treatment for basic types of wounds. When we think of wound care we can think of things such as bruising, or if someone has fallen or been struck. We can also think of cuts and lacerations, or something as simple as a scraped knee on a child. That's called an abrasion. Depending on what the wound is it's going to be treated a little bit differently. One thing we need to think about to protect ourselves and the person that's injured is make sure we wear some type of glove. The glove is for two purposes. It's to make sure that we keep ourselves safe from any kind of possible body fluids they might have that are contaminated, but also to keep our dirty hands from touching the wound. That could cause infection later on. For these purposes, we're just going to simulate I have gloves on. But again, you can get these at any first-aid supply store on the Internet, or also, any pharmacy or other type store in your neighborhood. So, what we're going to talk about is, let's assume that this is Annie. Annie has a laceration on her arm. The laceration is nothing more than a cut. What we want to do is we want to make sure that Annie's sitting down. We don't want anyone to be standing when we're trying to treat them because they could get dizzy and fall, depending on the wound. Some people get dizzy and fall just from looking at a wound; not actually the bleeding itself. So, what we would do is we'd have the patient sit down, and let's just assume for a minute that she has a cut on her arm. We'll take some kind of bandaging material. Hopefully, it's clean. If we don't have this we can always use a washcloth or any type of clothing, T-shirt, anything to stop the bleeding. And we'll just apply direct pressure. Try to elevate it as long as the bone or the shoulder's not hurt. You don't want to move it if it is. And once we elevate it we'll just apply the pressure for several minutes until the bleeding slows down. Once the bleeding slows down then we can wrap the bandage in place, and in that way it will stay. Then, we can figure out later on if she has to go to the hospital. If the bleeding doesn't stop that could be something very serious. You might want to consider dialing 9-1-1, or add some more bandages to this site. Squeeze it a little bit harder to help slow that bleeding down. Some other injuries that they could have; something as simple as a bruise. Again, we've all fallen. We've hit our knees, our shoulders. We've been bruised. A good treatment for that is something as simple as ice, and it could be ice that you put in a Ziploc bag. Wrap that in a towel. It could be these commercially available cold packs that you break and they get cold activated by a chemical reaction. And all you want to do with that is, again, if they have a bruise you would just simply apply the ice on there; making the ice to where it doesn't touch the skin directly. You want to make sure, again, there's a washcloth or something in between because you can do some minor damage to the skin. And leave that on there for about twenty minutes. The other types of injuries are the abrasions and again, that's scraping the knee. With the scraping of the knee, very, very minor. The biggest thing there is you want it to get cleaned. Usually, that doesn't require any kind of hospital or physician assistance. You can just do that with simple soap and water out of your sink. Just kind of rub it lightly; clean the area as best you can. Blot dry with some kind of clean paper towel, or again, preferably, some type of a sterile device, and then, just apply some kind of over-the-counter antibiotic ointment that you can get at your local pharmacy. Once you do that you simply want to make sure, over the next couple of days, that it doesn't get any redder, more tender, or anything that could be signs of infection later on down the road. And that was basic first-aid treatment for different types of wounds, and I hope you learned something today. And, have a very good afternoon.

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