Things to know about first aid for drowning (Part 1)

Drowning is a form of asphyxiation, caused by water being inhaled into the lungs, or blocked airways from spasm of the larynx while the victim is in water. This is a common accident that occurs while swimming, boating and during water activities. However, it can also happen at home such as in a water tank, a jar, a drain, etc.

When suffocated, the victim stops breathing, the heart beats slowly due to reflexes. Apnea continues to lead to hypoxia, increasing heart rate, and blood pressure. If breathing stops persist for about 20 seconds to 2 – 5 minutes (depending on the victim), the threshold is reached and the breathing reappears, causing water to be inhaled causing immediate laryngospasm. second breath apnea followed by forced breathing breaths causing water and foreign objects to be inhaled. As a result, the heart rate slows down, arrhythmia, cardiac arrest and death.

1. How to first aid drowning

First aid in place and the right technique is the most important, determining the survival or sequelae of the victim’s brain.
In order to save the life of a suffocated victim, the above processes must be promptly stopped, preferably right from the first stop of breathing, i.e. within the first 1- 4 minutes of being submerged in water, and handling well. comorbid injuries (especially head, neck and spine injuries ).

The correct first aid method is as follows:

  • Quickly remove the victim from the water surface by holding the victim’s arm, long pole to grasp, tossing the victim or picking up the victim.
  • Place casualty in a dry, well-ventilated place
  • If the victim is unconscious, check if the victim is still breathing by observing the movement of the chest:
    + If the chest is not moving, the victim is not breathing, perform the cardiac out of the chest half. under the sternum. Combine cardiac pressure and asphyxiation at the rate of 15/2 (2 ambulance) or 30/2 (1 ambulance) for 2 minutes and then reassess if the victim is breathing again? Are lips pink? Is there a reaction when shaking stimulates pain? If not and must continue these emergency operations even on the way to transfer the victim to a medical facility.
    If the victim is still breathing on his or her own, place the victim in a safe position lying on his side so that the vomit can easily escape if the victim is vomiting.
  • Remove wet clothing and keep warm by covering the victim with a blanket or dry towel
  • Promptly bring victim to a medical facility even if the victim appears to be normal or recover completely from first aid as the risk of secondary dyspnea can occur several hours after suffocation