Techniques of survival medicine include everything from stopping a wound from bleeding to performing sutures to close a gaping gash. Lack of traditional medical resources normally provided by trained doctors and nurses may not be available following a catastrophe or if you become lost in a remote wilderness. Therefore, you should know how to administer adequate care for cuts, broken bones, shock and other potentially fatal health emergencies.
Having access to a medical supply kit will assist in treating various medical issues. Several essential items that an emergency medical kit should contain include:
Applying pressure to the wound until the bleeding has stopped usually controls external bleeding. If bleeding continues after 30 minutes, use a pressure dressing, which is a thick piece of sterile gauze applied to the wound and then fixed in place by tightly wrapping a bandage around the wound.
However, after you have applied this pressure dressing, do not remove the dressing, even though the dressing might become blood-soaked. Wait one to two days before removing the dressing and replacing it with a fresh dressing. Monitor the wound for any signs of infections, such as swelling, redness, pain and foul-smelling seepage.
Always elevate bleeding extremities above the heart to help reduce blood loss. This also facilitates blood return to the heart and decreases wound blood pressure. Although this procedure applies in the majority of injuries, it does not apply to snakebites. An arm or leg sustaining snakebite should be lower than the heart to lessen the potential for heart attack induced by poison.
Learning how to use tourniquets should be part of survival medicine training. Tourniquets should only be applied when the bleeding cannot be controlled using other methods. Leaving a tourniquet too long will induce necrosis and possibly gangrene. To properly affix a tourniquet, perform the following steps:
Survival Medicine Techniques to Treat Shock
Anyone sustaining a major injury is in danger of shock, so watch for these symptoms:
Treat suspected incidences of shock by elevating legs at least six or seven inches above the body. Make sure the patient is in dry clothes and warm the patient with blankets, shelter or fire. If the person in shock is conscious, provide small cups of warm sugar or salt water. However, do not administer fluids if the person has an abominable wound or is unconscious.
Insect Bites and Stings
Survival medicine techniques for bites and stings include immediate removal of the venom sac or stinger by gently scraping with a razor blade, sharp knife blade or even your fingernail is nothing else is available. Apply antibiotic ointment and watch for symptoms of allergic reaction. To relieve itching, use dandelion sap, crushed garlic or a cold compress.
While snakebites are rare, most people do not die from snakebites but bites frequently become infected due to bacteria in the animal's saliva. Nonpoisonous snake bites reveal teeth rows on the skin while poisonous snakebites will show fang as well as teeth punctures. Clean the bite, remove any rings or bracelets in the event swelling occurs and keep the patient as calm and still as possible.
Many other medical procedures can greatly enhance the potential to survive an emergency and should be learned as part of any survival-training program.
Medicines and Gear for When There is No Doctor Available
In a survival situation, where medical assistance may not be available, you are going to have to make do, recognize symptoms, and possibly even come up with natural herbal or folk remedies to treat certain conditions.
Symptoms & Conditions