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How to First Aid For Fainting

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Fainting:-

Fainting is a brief episode of unconsciousness caused by a sudden drop in blood pressure. The most likely cause of this sudden drop will either be some change in the blood vessels or the heartbeat itself.

Blood vessels continually adjust their width to ensure a constant blood pressure. For instance, the vessels constrict (tighten) when we stand up to counteract the effects of gravity. Temporary low blood pressure can be caused by various events that prompt blood vessels to dilate (expand), including extreme heat, emotional distress or pain. The lack of blood to the brain causes loss of consciousness.

Most fainting will pass quickly and won’t be serious. Usually, a fainting episode will only last a few seconds, although it will make the person feel unwell and recovery may take several minutes. If a person doesn’t recover quickly, always seek urgent medical attention.

 

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Symptoms of fainting:-

  • Dizziness
  • Light-headedness
  • A pale face
  • Perspiration
  • Heightened anxiety and restlessness
  • Nausea
  • Collapse
  • Unconsciousness, for a few seconds
  • Full recovery after a few minutes.
  • Occasionally, a collapse may be caused by a more serious event such as a stroke or a disturbance in the normal heart rhythm. A faint might be telling you something is wrong and further examination is sometimes important.
  • If a person complains of breathlessness, chest pains or heart palpitations, or if the pulse is faster or slower than expected, the person should see a doctor. Similarly, slurred speech, facial droop or weakness in any limbs is signs of a serious problem.

 

Causes of a drop in blood pressure:-

  • Prolonged standing
  • Extreme heat, which pushes blood away from the main circulatory system and into the vessels of the skin
  • Emotional distress
  • Severe pain
  • The sight of blood
  • The sight of a hypodermic needle
  • Other events that a person may find distressing.

 

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What to do if you feel faint:-

If possible, lie down and elevate the feet. This may prevent a loss of consciousness. Fresh air can also help, especially if you are feeling hot. If it is not possible to lie down, put your head down as low as possible. If you do faint, remain lying down for ten minutes. Sit up slowly when you need to get up.

 

First aid and fainting:-

  • Help the person lie down. A person who has fainted in a chair should be helped to the ground.
  • If the person is unconscious, roll them on their side. Check they are breathing and that they have a pulse.
  • If possible, elevate the person’s feet above the height of their head.
  • If the fainting episode was brought on by heat, remove or loosen clothes, and try to cool the person down by wiping them with a wet cloth or fanning them.
  • Assess the person for any potential injuries if they have fallen.
  • In an emergency, always call for an ambulance if the person has not regained consciousness within a few seconds or recovered in a few minutes.

 

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