Doing DIY? First aid for if you 'Do Injure Yourself'
With the bank holiday weekend coming up, it provides the perfect
opportunity to make some new home improvements. Before you prepare
to finally finish off those DIY jobs around the house, take a read
of our essential first aid advice to help with some common DIY
All head injuries are potentially serious - they can lead to
damage of the brain and cause someone to become unresponsive. The
severity of a head injury would depend on how someone injured their
head, and how hard the impact of the injury was.
What to look for:
- • Brief loss of responsiveness
- • Wounded scalp
- • Dizziness or nausea
- • Loss of memory of events before or during the injury
- • Headache
- • Confusion
For a severe head injury, you should also look for:
- • Reduced levels of response
- • Loss of responsiveness
- • Leakage of blood or watery fluid from the ear or nose
- • Unequal pupil size
What to do:
- 1. Advise the casualty to sit down and give them a cold
compress to hold against the injury. You can use a cold compress,
bag of ice or frozen peas wrapped in a towel.
- 2. Treat any scalp wounds by applying direct pressure to the
- 3. Check if the casualty’s response levels using the AVPU scale
- 4. If they’re unresponsive or not quite right, don’t hesitate -
call 999 immediately. Use the AVPU test below to help you decide
their level of responsiveness.
- Alert: Is the casualty alert? Are their eyes
open and are they responding to questions?
- Voice: Do they respond to your voice? Can they
answer simple questions and instructions?
- Pain: If they are not alert or responding to
your voice, are they responding to pain? Do they move or open their
eyes if you pinch their earlobe?
- Unresponsive: Are they unresponsive to any
stimulus? Call 999 or 112 for an ambulance and explain their
response to the AVPU test. Wait with them until an ambulance
arrives, open their airway, and monitor their breathing, pulse, and
look for any changes in their level of response. If their breathing
becomes noisy or they begin to snore, turn them on their side into
the recovery position.
information about head injuries
A break or crack in a bone is called a fracture. In most cases a
broken bone cannot be seen - this is called a closed fracture, but
sometimes bits of a broken bone can puncture the skin. This is
called an open fracture.
What to look for - seven things you may see if someone has a
- • Swelling and bruising
- • Difficulty moving
- • Movement in an unnatural direction
- • A limb that looks shorter, twisted or bent
- • A grating noise or feeling if the limb is moved
- • Loss of strength
- • Signs of shock
What to do:
- 1. Support the injured body part and immobilise it with a sling
or by tying it to an uninjured part of the body.
- 2. If it is an open fracture, cover the wound with a sterile
dressing and secure it with a bandage. Apply pressure
around the wound to control any bleeding.
- 3. Call 999. Don’t move the casualty unless they’re in any
- 4. Check for signs of shock, which is often caused by losing
blood. Do NOT elevate an injured leg.
- 5. If they become unresponsive, and their breathing becomes
noisy or they begin to snore, turn them on their side into the
information about fractures
When bleeding is severe, it can be dramatic and distressing. If
someone’s bleeding isn’t controlled quickly they may lose a lot of
blood, become unresponsive and/or develop shock - this is not
emotional shock, but a life-threatening condition which is often
caused by loss of blood.
How to treat severe bleeding
- 1. Protect yourself by wearing gloves and remove any clothing
around the wound.
- 2. If there’s nothing in it, apply pressure directly to the
wound with a clean non-fluffy cloth or sterile dressing. Apply a
firm bandage over the dressing, but don’t cut off their
- 3. If there’s something in the wound leave it where it is and
apply pressure around it, pushing the edges together to stop the
- 4. Call 999/112 for emergency help.
- 5. Lie them down and raise their legs to treat shock.
- 6. Keep checking their breathing and whether they can respond
- 7. Be prepared to treat someone who is unresponsive.
- 8. If they become unresponsive, and their breathing becomes
noisy or they begin to snore turn them on their side into the
information about severe bleeding