The Australian summer is not all fun in the sun. Heat waves and dangerous creatures can ruin your beachside holiday if you are
The Australian summer is not all fun in the sun. Heat waves and dangerous creatures can ruin your beachside holiday if you are

Summer season first aid



Summer is the perfect time for exploration and relaxation, but watch out for the sun and stingers.Bees: Remove the sting by sliding or scraping your fingernail across it. Wash the area and apply ice to reduce swelling. If the person has an allergy to bee strings, they could fall into a life threatening state of anaphylactic shock. The only treatment is an injection of adrenaline. Keep the person still, apply pressure to the bite and seek immediate medical help.

Blue Ring Octopus: Found in rock pools, this animal is extremely dangerous because the poison can cause paralysis. If stung seek immediate medical help. While waiting for the ambulance, keep the person still as possible. A firm compression bandage should be applied over the sting site and the entire limb if possible. You should commence cardio-pulmonary re- suscitation if required.

Bluebottles: Remove any tentacles stuck to skin. Wash the site in cold water and apply cold pack ? avoiding direct contact with the skin. A major sting to the face or neck area should be treated fast, especially if there is swelling. If you experience chest pain or have trouble breathing trouble seek immediate medical help.

Burns: Run cold water on area for at least 20 minutes or until heat is removed from the burn. See a doctor if the burn is big- ger than a large coin.

Funnelweb spiders: Call 000. Apply a firm bandage over the site, extending to the end of the limb and back again. Lie person down and kept still.

Heat cramps: Move the person to a cooler location. Stretch and gently massage affected muscles. Give sips of water ev- ery 15 minutes.

Heat rash: Cleanse the area and dry off completely.

Hangover: Water, a painkiller, something to eat if you can and rest are about all you can do. The only way to prevent a hangover is to take it easy on the alcohol.

Heat exhaustion: Lie down in a cooler place. Apply cool, wet cloths to wrists, neck, underarms and groin area. Give sips of water ? discontinue if nausea occurs. If recovery is not prompt seek medical help.

Heat stroke: Call 000. It occurs when body temperature is high and no sweat is present. The skin may be cold and the pulse fast and weak. Move person to cooler place, remove excess clothing, use cold applications on neck, groin and underarms. Cover body with a wet sheet.

Jellyfish: Wash tentacles off with water. Use ice packs or anaesthetic cream to reduce pain.

Oyster cuts: Always clean wounds thoroughly and apply a disinfectant with an alcohol or aqueous base or one in powder form rather than a cream.

Peeling skin: Don't pick at the skin. Allow the dead skin sheets to detach on their own. Apply antiseptic cream to the newly revealed skin to reduce the risk of infection.

Redback Spider: A cold pack should be applied directly to the area off the bite. Never apply the cold pack directly onto the skin and never apply a compression bandage to a red- back spider bite.

Stringrays: Immerse the site in tolerable hot water until pain subsides. If the patient has not had tetanus immunisation booster within the last 5 years, see a doctor.

Sunburn: Cool shower. If blisters occur apply dry sterile dressings. There is a range of products available that help to soothe sunburn ? see your chemist for product suggestions.

Snake: Seek medical help. Apply a firm bandage over the site, extending to the end of the limb and back again. Lie person down and kept still.

Tick: Use fine pointed tweezers and grasp tick close to skin. Gently pull tick straight out.



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