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Three common First Aid Myths


With two of Australia’s largest cities in lockdown, there’s a lot of home schooling going on right now. And with the kids at home, the chance of accidents increases.

Here are three common First Aid Myths, that will help you do the right thing, not the wrong thing, if your child gets injured at home.

Myth 1 – Tilt your head back when your nose bleeds.

Truth – Actually when your child has a nosebleed, you shouldn’t put their head back at all. This can cause blood to flow down their throat and into their stomach, likely causing nausea and vomiting. Instead, have your child tilt their head slightly forwards and pinch their nose right at the nostrils, not higher. Hold this for 10 minutes to see the bleeding has stopped. Of course if it doesn’t and the bleeding continues, seek medical help.

Myth 2 – Put a hot compress on a sprained ankle.

Truth – Many people still believe you should apply heat to a sprained ankle, when the opposite is true. A cold compress is the best way to combat pain and swelling. Heat or warmth can worsen and inflame the injury. But if you apply an ice pack (wrapped in tea towel) for a full 10 minutes immediately after the injury you will bring the swelling down. Continue to apply cold compresses intermittently over the next 24 hours.

Myth 3 – Apply butter to a burn to soothe it

Truth – Butter is not exactly sterile and applying it to a burn means increasing the possibility of the burnt area becoming infected. Butter could also make the burn worse and even negatively affect future treatment by a doctor. Always apply cool, NOT COLD, running water to a burn for at least 20 minutes as quickly as you can. Repeat again to soothe the pain. If the burn is larger than a 20c piece, seek medical treatment immediately.

Following these simple truths, not myths, will help you to help your child recover from a nosebleed, sprained ankle or burn quicker and with far less problems. Of course, for any serious injuries or accidents around the home, if you are unsure what to do, dial 000.