Fainting happens when a person loses consciousness suddenly for a short period of time. This happens when the blood supply to the brain is temporarily inadequate and the person’s blood pressure drops. The causes of fainting can range from dehydration to a person suddenly standing up after sitting to a serious heart condition.
But what do you do in a situation where a person has fainted?
- Keep Calm
If you notice a person fainting, try to catch them or at least move any objects that might hurt them away. Help them slowly to the ground, if you have managed to catch them. When people faint they are unable to protect themselves as they fall. Preventing the fall will protect them from serious injuries.
- Position the person on their back
Lightly tap or shake the person once they have been stabilised on the ground. This is to see if they have regained consciousness. The average time for people who have fainted to regain consciousness is usually between 20 – 30 seconds.
Once a person has regained consciousness, inquire about pre-existing symptoms or conditions that may have caused the fainting. This includes symptoms such as headaches, seizure, numbness or tingling, chest pain or trouble breathing is all worrisome. If these symptoms are listed call emergency services on 0861 960 960.
- Help the person rest as soon as they regain consciousness
Loosen restrictive clothing, such as a tie or collar and help the person to be comfortable. Let the person rest for at least 15- 20 minutes. This will provide time for the blood to return to the brain. Make sure there is space for the person to breathe, especially if the person has fainted in a crowd.
Once the person is conscious and stable, give them something to eat if possible or water. After they have consumed something, don’t let them get up too quickly, as this might precipitate another fainting episode.
If the person has a head injury or any other additional symptoms the person should see a doctor immediately.
Once you have established that the person does have a pulse, try and raise their feet to above their head to help blood flow back to the brain.
- If the person does not regain consciousness
The first thing to do in this regard is to check for a pulse and then phone emergency services on 0861 960 960 as soon as possible.
- Initiate CPR if no pulse is found
If no pulse is found initiate CPR and consider finding someone around might be a medical professional.
Perform CPR as follow:
- Kneel next to the person.
- Place the heel of one hand at the centre of the person’s chest.
- Place the other hand on top of the first.
- Be sure not to bend your elbows.
- Use your whole upper body weight and compress on the person’s chest.
- The chest must be compressed as you push straight down by at least 2 inches.
- Push down on the chest at about 100 compressions each minute.
- Continue chest compressions until EMS arrives and takes over.
- Stay calm and reassure the victim
Stay composed and in control of the situation. This can make all the difference.
Remember to save Maponya 911 number on your phone to have handy in emergency situations. 0861 960 960