Basic First Aid Tips for a Safer Summer

The holidays have arrived and that means lots of fun along with the potential for scrapes and falls.

At Gymnastics NSW we hope you stay safe while enjoying this wonderful time! That’s why we spoke to Tim Bollard from JTSports to get some basic first aid tips to prepare for summer with family and friends.

Here are Tim’s top 10 tips for a safe summer:

1.     First aid kits

Always take a first aid kit with you (or ensure you will have access to one) when heading outdoors! This includes checking your kit regularly and re-stock used items.

2. Get first aid and CPR training

Learning CPR and First Aid is incredibly important. Accidents happen all the time and the initial care provided to a casualty until advanced care arrives can be lifesaving. First aid and CPR training helps us to determine best practice in providing the care that is needed and also to recognise when a first aid situation arises. CPR and first aid training can help you learn or remember some important skills to help save a life.

3. Manage scrapes and cuts

All scrapes and cuts should be managed even if they are only minor. To treat a minor scape or cut you should clean the affected area (non-fibre shedding material or sterile gauze soaked in saline), apply an antiseptic, cover with a sterile dressing and change when required. For deeper cuts you should always apply pressure to the area with a pad, secure with a bandage and elevate. If bleeding cannot be controlled or if medical assistance is required call 000.

4. Learn the DRSABCD Action Plan

Knowledge of DRSABCD is critical. Remember to always use personal protective equipment, as this will protect you from contracting other diseases or infections. A minimum should be gloves and a face mask. If it is a sprain or strain use the RICER (rest, ice, compression, elevation and referral) technique.

5. Handle fractures with care

Fractures and dislocations can be extremely painful. It is important not to move the affected limb or try to straighten. Providing support and comfort and controlling any other injuries such as cuts and scrapes or soft tissue damage. Call 000 and keep the limb as immobile as possible. Don’t forget to comfort the casualty during this time.

6. Don’t dismiss head injuries

Head injuries should always be treated with caution. Not all head injuries cause a loss of consciousness and a spine injury could also present. All head injuries should be assessed be a health care professional. If a casualty has lost consciousness, 000 must be called, protect the head and neck from any movement, turn on side and support the head and neck with both hands to maintain a clear airway until the ambulance arrives.

7. Swim with company

Never swim alone, always swim with a friend in case an accident occurs. Don’t jump in the water save a friend who is in trouble, rather reach or throw something in to help them float or so you can pull them from the water. 

8. Outdoor adventures need a life jacket

Wear a life jacket when swimming or playing water sports in a river, lake or the ocean.

9. Keep both eyes on the kids!

Always supervise children very closely when they are in the water. And don't overestimate their abilities or fatigue levels.

10. Don’t hesitate to call 000

When in doubt regarding a first aid situation always call 000 and stay on the line. And don’t forget to ask for consent prior to performing any first aid.