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15 Common First Aid Myths

first aid tipsAccording to a new study, 75 % of adults do not know basic first aid.

When an accident occurs, most of the time the first reaction will probably do more damage than just calling an ambulance and waiting.

Since many people don’t have any or very little first aid experience, they usually follow insane first aid myths that are passed down from older generations.

Please check out these top 15 first aid myths and see what you really should be doing in those circumstances:

1. Showers To Cure Croup Cough

There are many reasons to take a hot shower, but they won’t help for curing a cough.

There aren’t any medical cures for croup coughing, instead there are treatments to help improve the symptoms. 

2. Paper Bags For Hyperventilation

There are many causes for hyperventilation or breathing fast, like running, swimming and various activities.

So, treating this by breathing into a paper bag is not only dangerous, but definitely not medically recommended. 

3. Sucking Venom From A Snake Bite

By doing this, the snake will have infected two people with one bite, since once you suck the venom, you may just infect yourself.

The idea of removing snake venom this way is beyond illogical, let alone practical.

4. Locking a Seizure Patient’s Mouth

Although Seizures are scary to watch, they aren’t very harmful.

Instead of helping the patient, you can actually prevent them from breathing correctly, or if they vomit, by closing their mouth you may cause them to aspirate on their vomit. 

5. Tilting Head For a Nosebleed

This one is popular, and to the younger crowds, it may even make sense. But where does it go?

I’m sure some have asked this question, your stomach will refuse the blood and it’ll end up all over who ever is in front of you along with what you had for lunch.

6. Rubbing Snow On Frostbites

There are many things one can do to further make this incident much worse, such as popping any blisters or placing the extremity over a warm stove.

The best treatment for this is to remove any objects, and visit a medical center for professional treatment.

 7.  Laying a Steak on a Black Eye

If you want to infect your eye with E coli, then placing a steake over your eye will get the job done.

It’s thought that people do this for the coolness, like an ice pack, instead of just using ice or a bag of frozen vegetables.

8. Rubbing Butter on Burns

Butter, steaks, and oil are great for dinner, but not so great for remedying burns.

Oils keeps the heat in, and most people would like help to rid them of painful heat.  Onions, on the other hand, can be ideal for 2nd degree burns.

9. Alcohol to Cool a Fever 

Because alcohol can be absorbed into the skin, this makes rubbing alcohol on the body a negative for someone with a fever.

10. Warming Up With Alcohol

Drinking alcohol will make you feel warm, instead alcohol can initiate hypothermia during cold weather.

11. Scraping Away A Stinger

The most important thing for reducing the venom of a bee sting is to quickly remove it.

But scrapping could break it and cause it to stay lodged in the epidermal, this is just an incident you have to be prepared for or avoid.

12. Urination For Jellyfish Stings

Urinating on anyone is simply disgusting, and has no benefit! For jellyfish stings, alcohol and tweezers work just fine.

13. Soaking Sprains

If you’ve ever soaked your sprained ankle in warm water and noticed swelling, the warm water is the cause.

Medical experts recommend resting, ice, compression wraps, and elevating your ankle. This is known as RICE.

14. Stop Bleeding With A Bandage Wrap

This is seen a lot in cinema, but it won’t work in most in real life situations, because it can cause damage to the tissue. Instead, apply direct pressure to the wound to control bleeding.

15. Insisting on Keeping a Head Injury Victim Awake

Why would keeping someone awake treat a head injury?  If the injury was serious and you are concerned, head to Emergency; better safe than sorry!

The biggest mistake that many people make is believing the ambulance will arrive in a timely manner.

We see them speeding all the time, but the fact still remains, it takes them some time to get there.

And when in an emergency situation, every second counts.

That’s exactly why understanding the correct procedures to follow are important and will make a big difference.

The above first aid myths are based on folklore and superstition and unfortunately, many people still believe them to be true. 

What are your first aid tips?

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We hope to see you again. Check back later for the new updates to our Healthy Lifestyle Section of the Blog. There is so much more to come!


Article by Marcela De Vivo

Marcela De Vivo is an avid Guest blogger touching on topics from The Red Cross to up to date employee Medical Training. She writes for a trusted site that specializes in CPR/AED and First aid certification online.

***Image Source: mrsdkrebs

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3 Responses to “15 Common First Aid Myths”

  1. Justin Says:

    This is such interesting information. I have been doing many of the things listed in your article for years and they were not very effective. Now I know why.

  2. First Aid Kit Says:

    Absolutely, these were certain myths which most of us are following blindly without knowing about the consequences of it. Not only these myths there are certain other superstitious myths which are being followed in some developing countries. Proper first aid should be applied as soon as any injury occur.

  3. Elena Says:

    You are absolutely right! Thanks for stopping by!

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