11 July 2017
While travelling, the last thing on our minds is thinking about someone getting injured and needing medical attention. However, accidents do happen, so it’s worth knowing some first aid tips so you can be proactive, especially when travelling with children and elderly family members.
Always seek professional medical assistance as required, but while you are waiting it could be helpful to know some basic first-aid. This could save lives in critical situations. Most important of all is stay calm and assess the situation. By keeping calm, you will reassure those around you, and be better able to maintain the presence of mind to make the right decisions.
First of all, it pays to be prepared for any type of medical emergency while travelling and one of the best ways to do this is to have a good travel insurance policy in place that covers medical emergencies while travelling. Most policies have a 24 hr Medical Assistance Company as part of the cover, who are there to help if you need medical assistance while abroad. So make sure you always have their details handy. Also pack a first-aid kit in your hand luggage. This will be a big help if anyone has a minor ailment or injury on a trip. Stock with essentials such as strip bandages, antiseptic wipes, plasters, antiseptic cream, painkillers.
Here are five tips for administering first aid if you or your travel companions need assistance on a trip:
A change in climate, different foods, eating out, can all sometimes cause an upset tummy or food poisoning while travelling. If this happens, try to drink plenty of water in small doses at a time. This will help keep you hydrated and clear your digestive system. Lie down and rest. Sometimes warm water with a pinch of salt or sugar and lemon juice can help. Avoid solid foods until vomiting ends. Then eat light, bland foods, such as crackers, bananas, rice. Don’t eat fried, greasy, spicy, or sweet foods and avoid anti-nausea treatments unless you have sought medical advice. If symptoms persists or get worse seek medical attention.
There are various types of wounds – abrasions, lacerations, and puncture wounds. For any wound of this type, cleaning it is very important in order to prevent infection. If there is significant bleeding, try to stem the flow by using a clean cloth and apply pressure to the wound. It can also help to hold the wound area above heart level. If there is an object embedded in the wound, do not try to remove it and wait for qualified medical help.