TUTORIALS

WHAT TO DO WHEN SOMEONE IS HAVING A HEART ATTACK, STROKE OR SEIZURE

heart_1446031915

Watching someone go through a seizure or an attack is one of the most hardest things to watch especially when you know you can not do anything about it. It’s scary because you usually act on instinct, but you’re not sure whether your actions are helping them or making the problem worse. So here is WHAT TO DO WHEN SOMEONE IS HAVING A HEART ATTACK, STROKE OR SEIZURE

 

1. Heart attack

Heart attacks are usually marked by chest pain but in some cases, especially in the case of diabetics, they have no symptoms at all. Apart from chest pain, shortness of breath, sweating, nausea, vomiting, light-headedness, anxiety and exhaustion are some of the other symptoms of a heart attack. Often, the pain even spreads to other parts of the upper body like the arms, back, neck, stomach, teeth and jaw. Dr. Subhash Chandra, Chairman and Head of the Department of Cardiology, BLK Centre for Cardiac Sciences tells us what to do in case of a heart attack.

• Don’t let the person move.
• If possible, take a tablet of dissolvable aspirin, put it in water and make the person drink it.
• Call an ambulance and tell them exactly what happened and what symptoms the patient is experiencing.
• In case the person is passing out, ask them to cough vigorously, as it will help them stay conscious.
• If they stop breathing, do CPR immediately.

2. Stroke

When it comes to a stroke, you need to identify the symptoms F.A.S.T.:
F: Face drooping
A: Arm weakness
S: Speech difficulty
T: Time to call an ambulance immediately!

Beyond this, there are a few more symptoms to look out for, including numbness or weakness in the legs, confusion and difficulty in understanding, inability to see from one or both eyes, inability to walk, dizziness, loss of balance and a severe headache. Dr. Vipul Gupta, Head of the Neurovascular Intervention Center, Medanta The Medicity has this advice in case of a stroke:
• Call an ambulance immediately, without waiting for the symptoms to get better. The faster the person is treated, the more of their brain can be saved. Every minute is precious! Do not waste time taking the person to the family doctor.
• If the person is conscious and breathing, make them lie down on their side with their head slightly raised.
• If the person is not breathing and does not have a pulse, give them CPR right away.
• Do not give them anything to eat or drink.
• Loosen any tight clothing that could hamper their breathing.
• Do not give the person any kind of blood pressure medication

You’ve probably witnessed a medical emergency at least once in your life. One of the hardest things to do is watch someone going through that kind of trauma and not knowing what to do, or how to help them. It’s scary because you usually act on instinct, but you’re not sure whether your actions are helping them or making the problem worse.
So, to help you be more prepared, we’ve put together a guide of what exactly you should do in the event of someone suffering a stroke, heart attack or seizure.
1. Heart attack

VIA SHUTTERSTOCK

Heart attacks are usually marked by chest pain but in some cases, especially in the case of diabetics, they have no symptoms at all. Apart from chest pain, shortness of breath, sweating, nausea, vomiting, light-headedness, anxiety and exhaustion are some of the other symptoms of a heart attack. Often, the pain even spreads to other parts of the upper body like the arms, back, neck, stomach, teeth and jaw. Dr. Subhash Chandra, Chairman and Head of the Department of Cardiology, BLK Centre for Cardiac Sciences tells us what to do in case of a heart attack.
• Don’t let the person move.
• If possible, take a tablet of dissolvable aspirin, put it in water and make the person drink it.
• Call an ambulance and tell them exactly what happened and what symptoms the patient is experiencing.
• In case the person is passing out, ask them to cough vigorously, as it will help them stay conscious.
• If they stop breathing, do CPR immediately.
2. Stroke

VIA SHUTTERSTOCK
When it comes to a stroke, you need to identify the symptoms F.A.S.T.:
F: Face drooping
A: Arm weakness
S: Speech difficulty
T: Time to call an ambulance immediately!
Beyond this, there are a few more symptoms to look out for, including numbness or weakness in the legs, confusion and difficulty in understanding, inability to see from one or both eyes, inability to walk, dizziness, loss of balance and a severe headache. Dr. Vipul Gupta, Head of the Neurovascular Intervention Center, Medanta The Medicity has this advice in case of a stroke:
• Call an ambulance immediately, without waiting for the symptoms to get better. The faster the person is treated, the more of their brain can be saved. Every minute is precious! Do not waste time taking the person to the family doctor.
• If the person is conscious and breathing, make them lie down on their side with their head slightly raised.
• If the person is not breathing and does not have a pulse, give them CPR right away.
• Do not give them anything to eat or drink.
• Loosen any tight clothing that could hamper their breathing.
• Do not give the person any kind of blood pressure medication.

 

3. Epileptic seizure

 

You’ll recognise a seizure instantly, because the person will be convulsing in fits, and may have saliva coming out of their mouth. Seizures typically last no longer than 60 or 90 seconds, however that minute or minute and a half can feel like a lifetime.

Here’s what you need to do during the seizure.
• If the person is upright, try to prevent them from falling. Move any obstacles out of the way, and help them down to the floor gently. The main thing is to try and prevent injuries to the head.
• If the person is already on the floor, try to shift them on to their side, so that fluid can leak out of their mouth on to the floor. However, avoid putting too much pressure on them to turn.
• Do not try to put anything in their mouth – not your fingers, a spoon or any other object. If you put your own fingers you could get bitten, and if you put any other object, the person may bite it too hard and hurt their own teeth.
• Do not try to hold the person down, or move them somewhere else, as it could injure them.

  • Here’s what you should do after the seizure:
    • If you couldn’t turn them on to their side before, turn them over now.
    • Check them for injuries.
    • If the person cannot breathe, check if there is any vomit or saliva in their mouth.
    • Loosen any tight shoes or clothing.
    • Do not give them anything to eat or drink until they are alert.
    • Let them rest, as they will be sleepy and confused for some time.

Leave a Comment

Share
%d bloggers like this: