Al­co­hol poi­son­ing poses real dan­ger

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By DR TONY SMITH

As peo­ple are get­ting into the fes­tive mood and at­tend­ing more par­ties, St John would like to take the op­por­tu­nity to re­mind friends and fam­ily of what to do if they are con­cerned about a per­son who is very in­tox­i­cated.

Life-threat­en­ing al­co­hol poi­son­ing oc­curs most com­monly in young peo­ple who drink undi­luted spir­its very quickly.

In this set­ting it is pos­si­ble for a per­son to drink a po­ten­tially fa­tal dose of al­co­hol be­fore they start to show signs of in­tox­i­ca­tion – and then be­come rapidly un­con­scious.

Un­der these cir­cum­stances 300ml of undi­luted spir­its is enough to kill a young per­son.

A per­son who is un­con­scious from al­co­hol poi­son­ing who reaches hos­pi­tal alive has a high chance of sur­vival. A per­son who is un­con­scious from al­co­hol poi­son­ing who is left alone has a high chance of dy­ing.

Shake their shoul­der and shout at them – if they wake they are not un­con­scious. They need some­one to stay with them and look af­ter them.

If they do not re­spond to a shake and shout they are un­con­scious. Lay them on their side, call an am­bu­lance, stay with them and keep them on their side. Re­move vomit blocks the front of the mouth.

On an­other note as peo­ple are start­ing to spend more time out­side in their gar­dens and/or ven­tur­ing fur­ther into the great out­doors, St John has some timely re­minder first aid tips for bee stings.

Re­move the st­ing quickly – within sec­onds if pos­si­ble. The speed of re­moval is more im­por­tant than the method of re­moval.

Call 111 for an am­bu­lance im­me­di­ately if the pa­tient is known to have a life- threat­en­ing al­lergy to bee stings. As­sist them to take any pre­scribed med­i­ca­tion.

Ap­ply an ice pack to the st­ing area for 10 to 20 min­utes if pain is se­vere. This may be re­peated if pain per­sists.

Call 111 for an am­bu­lance if the pa­tient shows any of the fol­low­ing: dif­fi­culty breath­ing; faint­ing; a red rash all over their body; or swelling of the face or mouth.

St John wishes ev­ery­one a safe and happy break over the hol­i­days.

For more first aid tips and to en­rol in a first aid course go to stjohn.



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