Instructions for first aid in the check: is it useful in an emergency?

Here, spontaneous answers on the subject of first aid are required. Do you know what to do in the following situations?

  • Your twelve year old daughter swallowed a piece of candy. It’s in the windpipe. The child gasps and cannot breathe?
  • You are at a family celebration. Suddenly your 70-year-old uncle takes hold of his heart next to you and slumps unconscious?
  • You are taking a walk on the beach with your partner. He steps on a rusty piece of a wire fence that gets stuck in the sole of his foot?

Just writing about such emergencies makes me a little nervous. Although I know the answers (you get them at the bottom), I have to force myself into consciousness, because there is only one thought at first: Oh God, oh God. I suspect you feel the same, even if you are reasonably good at first aid. So what can you do to get a better feeling?

This is a question a fellow journalist, Marcus von Jordan, asked himself a few years ago. He developed a solution that I thought was so interesting after hearing it for the first time that I took a closer look at it for healthandthecity.de.

“Little savior” for children, travel, traffic accident

It’s about the “little savior”. These are three pieces of advice on first aid: first aid for children, first aid when traveling, first aid in traffic accidents. It is a collection of cards on the relevant first aid topics – for children, including broken bones, electrical accidents, drowning, burns, fever. The cards are made of sturdy material and are stapled together at one corner. A tab system makes it possible to land in the right place with three simple steps: look for the correct number in the table of contents (at the very front), record the corresponding number on the tab (top) and fan it out.

In addition, every card collection has a lobster lanyard with a little angel – the little savior. The first aid guide can be hung up on it, for example in the kitchen. In an emergency, the handle also makes it easier to fumble the map book out of the glove compartment in the car or out of a pocket.

Here is an overview of my check:

Who is it? Marcus von Jordan is the editor-in-chief of the journalist platform torial . As he told me in an interview, he came up with the idea of ​​“little rescuer” when he was talking to the general practitioner Dr. Jessica Braun sat together, whom he knows privately. The doctor was annoyed that there were no easy-to-use instructions for first aid. They are too overloaded, peppered with foreign words: They are afraid of saving lives.

Together they developed “little savior”: Jessica Braun made sure the content was correct, Marcus Jordan made it easy to understand. A graphic artist converted the advice into easy-to-follow picture instructions. Since then, Jordan and Braun have been self-publishing the “small rescuers” as a GmbH.

This is what healthandthecity.de says about it: First aid is a topic that is sooo enormously important and receives too little attention. Many people only take one first aid course for their driver’s license in their lifetime. The result: In an emergency they are insecure and are afraid of harm if they provide assistance.

Anything that helps to encourage people to give first aid is therefore to be welcomed. A low-threshold offer all the more so. And these are the “little saviors” in any case. I also think they make more sense than first aid apps, which are abundant. Because in an emergency, I would have no concentration, no patience or fine motor skills to click through an app menu until I find the right instructions – no matter how well done the menu navigation is. I also see an advantage in the “little rescuers” over traditional medicine-for-home books that are in many households. Because even there you have to search and leaf through laboriously and often find incomprehensible stuff.

What can the card books do for first aid? The “First Aid for Children” has made it to the certification of the Foundation Health – is therefore checked for transparency, objectivity, comprehensibility and suitability for everyday use. The other two guides are on the same level in terms of content and appearance.

Of course, I checked the content of the booklet myself and didn’t find any errors. I think it’s nice that when it comes to resuscitation, they follow the new guidelines on resuscitation by laypeople and only encourage chest compressions instead of spending a long time on mouth-to-mouth resuscitation (which is correctly included).

In the “small rescuers” there is no space for background information – which I think is good – so here is a quick digression:

In the event of a cardiac arrest, the heart stops beating, so no blood and therefore no more oxygen is pumped through the body. If the brain does not get oxygen, one becomes unconscious for a few seconds. Often, however, there is still oxygen-rich blood in the arms and legs that can reach the brain by pressing. That is why pressing is so important. Of course, a trained first aider can and should continue to ventilate. This also improves the chances of survival. However, several studies have shown that the crucial step is to take action in the first place. By calling for ventilation, however, many shrank from even intervening in an emergency. Hence the simplification. More on this in this pdf of the German Heart Foundation .

Back to the “little rescuers”: The instructions are step by step, so that you can easily imitate them even in the excitement. The emergency number 112 is where it should be. The pictures are practical and personable. This helps to take away your shyness. Only in the instructions for resuscitation with chest compressions I miss the reference to the Bee Gees song “Stayin ‘Alive” . Its rhythm corresponds almost exactly to the required 100 pushers per minute that you should provide as a first aid worker. This knowledge in the back of the head would have made it even more practical and clear. Also, I personally find that singing helps a lot with stamina while pressing on the chest. It is extremely exhausting.

But the comment concerns a subtlety. All in all, you can work well with the “little rescuers  . Mainly because the handling described above is very practical and designed so that it has to be done quickly in an emergency.

What do the makers want to achieve?In an interview with me, Marcus von Jordan emphasized that he wanted to make the “little rescuers” want to deal with the topic of first aid in general – in the hope of lowering the inhibition threshold for helping. “With first aid, it is not primarily a question of know-how, but of attitude,” he says. It is important to feel responsible in an emergency, to show compassion, to trust yourself and to tackle. And every bit of information that you have already seen in advance is useful. Even if it is only vaguely in the back of the head, it promotes self-confidence. Jordan therefore hopes that buyers of these map collections will read them at least once without any need. The loose presentation should help. If you want, you can play through the cards like a quiz. According to the motto:

This is what healthandthecity.de says: Providing first aid is a human imperative . Doctors emphasize that you do not harm a sick or injured person even with incorrect intervention. Not doing anything increases the risk of people dying. Incidentally, in Germany you are obliged to provide assistance – and in return you are insured against your own damage and any damage you might cause.

The idea of ​​working through the “little rescuers  preventively therefore makes sense. Especially since I see limitations in acute use: The first aid booklet for travelers is a weight factor for backpackers. I wouldn’t want to carry it up a mountain. It wouldn’t have a permanent place in my beach bag either, but would remain in the hotel. The same applies to first aid for children and for road users. I see them in a fixed place in the kitchen or in the glove compartment. So you don’t have them with you everywhere.

However, how realistic is it to deal with first aid beforehand? I can not answer that. I can best imagine parents doing that. That’s why I also like the reference to the booklet: “The ‘little rescuer’ cannot replace the practical experience of a first aid course.” That’s true. Nothing is as safe as a practical exercise.

So on to the first aid course! These cards are used for security.

Where do you get the “little saviors  and what do they cost? Each card collection costs 12.95 euros. You can order it here: http://www.kleiner-retter.de . Or among other things via amazon and edumero.

Finally: What should you do in the 3 emergencies from the beginning?

  • Candy in the windpipe: Heimlich handle
  • Cardiovascular arrest: check, call, press. That means: addressing the person, they do not react, assuming unconsciousness. Call emergency number 112. Resuscitation ceaselessly until the ambulance arrives.
  • Foreign bodies in the wound: leave in, cover the wound, take the patient to the doctor quickly. Also: think about the tetanus vaccination (tetanus vaccination).