I have to be honest and up front with today’s tip. I didn’t know anything about “shock” going into this. This book however, really filled me in. We’re getting into the good stuff and I’m enjoying it.
17) Treat For Shock
“During trauma, the circulatory system diverts the body’s blood supply to vital internal organs. This redistribution of oxygen can ultimately lead to shock, which is fatal if not treated properly”. We aren’t dealing with everyday cuts and scrapes here. This stuff is serious. “Pain and fear both contribute to shock” so it can be extremely difficult to keep under control. Here are the steps recommended by the book for treating shock:
- The first thing you need to do is recognize that you are in fact dealing with shock. Symptoms of shock include “rapid pulse, gray or pale skin (especially around the lips), and cold, clammy skin on which the sweat doesn’t evaporate”. Gasping for air, nausea and vomiting are also symptoms that occur as the condition worsens.
- Lie the victim down, keeping their head low. “Treat any outward injuries, such as fractures or bleeding“.
- Raise the feet of the victim slightly but avoid any injuries they may have.
- Remove or loosen any clothing, such as belts, that might be restrictive in any way. This will allow the victim to breath easier.
- “Keep the victim warm with items such as blankets or coats”.
- Use distractions to keep the victim from thinking about their situation. Talk to them and reassure them that everything will be ok. Remember, fear is one of the contributing factors for shock, so keeping them calm is key to treating it.
Shock is something I have never had to deal with luckily. I’ve seen lots of ER shows and things like that, so I know that shock is a big deal. The body is a crazy machine and shock is essentially the body going into shut down mode. All power is being redirected to the vital parts to keep everything going as long as possible. Unfortunately it sometimes kills us in the process.
The information contained in this post is a combination of my own opinion and information provided in the book Urban Survival Guide by Rich Johnson. This is not intended to be used for medical instruction. If you have an injury and are able, please refer to your doctor before attempting anything mentioned above.