Prevention of Emergencies like Stroke, Heart Attack or Angina:

Circulation emergencies like Heart Attacks, Strokes, Angina or even TIA’s “Trans Ischemic Attack’s” might seem to the person experiencing the effects like a sudden event, although the truth is that cardiovascular disease actually develops after a prolonged period of time. Many would feel that the age groups associated with such medical emergencies would only appear in the 40+ age range, when in fact it can begin as early as in your teens.

Prevention methods for these types of emergencies are well known in many groups, and everyone has a theory on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. For this prevention method we will refer to the basics like Nutrition, Weight Control, Exercise, Stress Control & Breaking Unhealthy Habits.

PREVENTION of CVD “Cardiovascular Disease

Lets start with “Weight Control“, Body fat in an excessive amounts can lead to heart disease, diabetes, gallbladder disease & high blood pressure. As we all know loosing body fat is “NOT EASY“, as your body balances between how much you eat & how many calories you use through out the day, this balance can be tilted in the wrong direction “thus gaining body fat“. There are also other factors like thyroid problems as well as Hormonal changes that need the help of a physician. If your thinking about taking on the challenge of losing body fat there are some easy steps to help.

  1. Get your Body fat % analyzed by a Professional to see that there is a problem.
  2. Portion Sizes” Starving yourself will “NOT” work, your body will only hoard the calories to sustain itself. However if you eat like your growing then you will. Remember your stomach should be about the size of your fist, that means you should eat that as a proportionate size per meal.
  3. Exercise” As more and more technology makes our life simpler we see less and less people being active other than with their “thumbs“. Exercise has been something that people have been prompted to do ever sense grade school, and for good reasons. Exercise helps you by keeping your cardiovascular system fit and even burns off excessive calories, this helps you: –Cope with stressImproves self-esteemburns body fatImproves sleep qualityImproves immune systemFights Depression
  4. Nutrition” if your body is a biological machine than what fuels you chose to put into the machine may either make it run better, or worse. Try starting off with a balanced diet, human’s are “Omnivorous” and choosing just one food group rather than all may cause long term damage to your body like iron deficiencies, diabetes, immune system defectiveness, and many other ailments that have been medically documented to appear in the absence of a balanced diet between “all” food groups. for further information check the Canadian Food Guide to give you an idea of a balanced diet. Also remember to stay hydrated, your body is mostly fluids and that amount should be kept up with water intake of about 8 cups of water a day, add more if you attend vigorous activities.
  5. Stress” A normal part of life, however learning to cope with stress may not be easy. Do your best to reduce stress to keep your body healthy, a slogan to remember is “A Healthy mind leads to a Healthy Body” Or visa-versa depending on your goals.

Just remember to do what you can and keep realistic goals that you can achieve.

In Any Emergency Remember too:
Protect Yourself!!! Call 911!!! Don’t Waste Time!!!

Swoop in & give a breath of life, let first aid training in Edmonton be your Saving Grace.

Allergic Reactions, What to Look For & How to Help

What is an allergic reaction? How can I help someone having an allergic reaction? What does an allergic reaction look like? Can an allergy be fatal? What does an extreme allergy or Anaphylaxis look like? What causes allergies? These are some of the questions that we have received within our first aid courses, to begin an allergic reaction is an immune response causing hypersensitivity to substances that either contact or enter the body.

Substances causing the allergy are called Allergens, these can be almost anything from bee venom, pollen, pet dander, shell fish and many other substances. When your body comes into contact with an allergen it reacts as if the substance was a pathogen or harmful substance. This causes the body to have an immune response and release histamines, histamines are involved with the body’s immune response causing tissue inflammation or swelling at the sight of contact with the allergen. Depending on where the body begins to swell this can range from a slight irritation to extremes that may be life threatening “Anaphylaxis“.

Depending on the person’s sensitivity to the substance their body’s immune response “Allergy” may be slow to react or almost instantaneous. The severity of the reaction depends on each individuals immune system and sensitivity.

How to Spot an Allergy Mild or Severe “Anaphylaxis”


  • Itchy skin with raised areas, Hives or even a Rash
  • Tightness in the throat or chest, congestion
  • Dizziness , weakness or confusion

-Severe “Anaphylaxis-

  • Swelling of the face, lips, neck, ears or hands, if the tongue or throat swell this may block the airway “Dangerous”
  • Redness of the skin that may be raised with a rash, hives or blotchy.
  • Weakness or dizziness with nausea or vomiting
  • breathing difficulties, wheezing or coughing

How to Help:

  • If the scene is safe to do so “Check” the victim and make sure they are breathing.
  • If the victim’s allergy is severe “Anaphylaxis” or has trouble breathing and loses consciousness have someone “Call 911” and make sure emergency response is on the way.
  • Care” for the Victim by offering comfort warmth & reasurance as anxiety can make symptoms worse
  • if the reaction is extreme with swelling or difficulty breathing & the victim “Has an Epi-Pen” or epinephrine auto-injector help the person use it. “Make sure to follow the 5 rights of medication assistance” and Assist “Don’t Give” the victims medication.
  • Always refer the victim to an emergency facility if the allergic reaction is severe “Anaphylaxis” and seek medical attention. Symptoms may return even after using an Epi-Pen within as little as 15 minutes.

To Assist with an Epinephrine Auto-Injector

  1. Check the 5 Rights of Medication before assisting
  2. Help the victim remove the safety cap “Blue to the sky
  3. Tell the person to firmly place the injector tip “Orange against the Thigh” hard enough to hear or feel the needle release. “Click” and hold for 10 seconds.
  4. Remove the Auto-Injector
  5. Keep the Auto-Injector with the victim for proper disposal at the hospital.

If you have an allergy, read ingredients or labels carefully and always be sure to ask when you are eating out about what is in the food. Avoid allergens and be sure to check with your physician about childhood allergies.

In Any Emergency Remember To:
Protect Yourself!!! Call 911!!! Don’t Waste Time!!!

Swoop in & Give a Breath of Life, Let First Aid Training in Edmonton be your Saving Grace.

Assisting With Medications During First Aid

Should I give a medication to someone who asks for it? Should I help a person to take their medications? Should I keep extra medications in my first aid kit just in case? These questions are some of the more prominent questions we are asked in class as we instruct First Aid students on how to help with Medications during a First Aid situation.

To shed some light on Medication use in First Aid scenarios & according to the Alberta Occupational Health & Safety regulations First Aid attendants have very specific guidelines on what they can and should not do with Medications in First Aid.

To make this easy “In Alberta” First Aiders are “NOT Allowed” to diagnose, prescribe or administer “Give” any medication. However they are allowed to “Assist” individuals with their “own” prescribed medication if the casualty identifies the medication on their own & is able to take it without assistance.

What does this mean about giving medications in an emergency? Simply put “you CAN Assistbutyou can NOT Give“. The victim must take the medications on their own and be of sound enough mind to understand the risks. This includes all over the counter medications and above counter medications.

To Assist With Medications:

  • The ill or injured person must be conscious and able to understand the risks involved with taking a medication & be able to take it themselves “Self Administration
  • The First Aiders Assistance should be limited to preparing the medication for the victim, this is restricted to but includes oral & auto-injected medications.
  • The victim should be certain that nothing will interfere or react negatively with the medication and should follow the written instructions on the label / device.
  • The Five Rights of Medications are met:
  1. Right Person – If it is a prescribed medication the names match the person taking it on the label.
  2. Right Medication – Use the appropriate medication for the situation “Read the Label”
  3. Right Amount – Follow directions on the bottle / device or package on how much the victim should receive
  4. Right Time – Help the victim “Before they hit the Floor“, the victim must be conscious and able to understand how to use medications.
  5. Right Method – There are only 4 ways a medication can get into your body “Injected / Inhaled / Ingested or AbsorbedRead the Label & follow the Directions carefully.

For medications in first aid kits just remember that medications are subject to the individual’s needs. This means that stocking a first aid kit with medications is not advised as each person has different requirements on medications and they should only take those that are prescribed for themselves or have the medication on them.

In any Emergency remember too:
Protect Yourself!!! Call 911!!! Don’t Waste Time!!!

Swoop in and give a Breath of Life, Let First Aid Training be your Saving Grace.