Injuries & first aid
Mountain first aid is a skill that needs to be learnt and practised. Nothing could be worse than seeing a close friend in pain, when all you can do is stand there looking dumb without a clue of what to do. Buy a book on mountain first aid procedures and learn the basics before you go away. Even better, enrol on a professional first aid course.
The following is a very basic guide for immediate first aid, to help relieve pain and to stop further injury until help is at hand. General rules when helping a casualty: clear the airways and check the patient frequently. Arrest bleeding, apply dressings and immobilise broken limbs. Finally treat for shock, relieve pain and then evacuate the casualty A.S.A.P. If in doubt, do as little as possible to avoid worsening the situation
Never go backcountry riding without a well equipped first-aid kit.
|first-aid kit must include|
|· Waterproof plasters,|
|· Bandages and safety pins|
|· A sling|
|· Antiseptic cream|
|· Gauze pads|
|· First Aid tape|
|· Asprin or other pain relief|
Hypothermia (exposure) is caused by body heat loss to below 37C. To prevent, eat properly and wear technical, waterproof, warm clothing. To treat, get the casualty under shelter and out of wet clothing, while doing all you can to increase body heat.
Frostbite/Frostnip is full or partial freezing of the skin and its tissues, causing numbness and no reaction to pain. To prevent, avoid exposure of bare skin, and wear correct clothing. To treat, warm the affected areas but never apply direct heat.
Snowblindness is temporary, partial, or total blindness, caused by direct and indirect ultra- violet light, even on dull days when the sun can't be seen. To prevent, wear suitable eyewear that has a 100% UVA & UVB rating. To treat, cover eyes and apply wet cloth to the forehead. Keep out of bright areas.
Dehydration occurs because of depleted fluids. Dizziness and nausea are early warning signs of dehydration. To prevent, drink regular amounts of fluid, such as water or healthy sport drinks. To treat, take a rest and drink as much fluid needed to re-hydrate your system.