Emergency first aid 4x4 gauze pads are the cornerstone of first aid wound care. Perfect size for almost all first aid injuries, very universal. Great for stopping bleeding, covering of wounds to prevent infection or just insulating the skin for an ice pack.
We carried 2x2 gauze pads in our fire department first aid bags and rarely used them. When you need something smaller, simply fold up the 4x4 dressing to create a very thick 2x2 dressing.
A gauze dressing is for bleeding control, covering injuries and protecting the body from septic infection. Most household items contain bacteria and dyes that can end up in the wound. Sanitary napkins can also be a bad idea. They don’t support clotting, an essential goal to control bleeding. The design is just the opposite of Gauze dressings. Sanitary napkins are designed to absorb, gauze pads were created to clot.
TIP! To control serious bleeding, apply multiple 4x4 Gauze Dressings to the wound and hold firm direct pressure for 3-5 minutes. If the dressing becomes soaked, it is time to add more gauze dressings and then elevate the wound above the heart for another 3-5 minute. That should work. If not, add more gauze dressings and then add pressure by pressing your fingers to the brachial or femoral artery. Again, for another 3-5 minute. DO NOT LIFT UP on dressings to check on bleeding, it will only remove the clotting and cause more blood loss. So no peeking!
Read my blog on How to Control and Stop Bleeding
For your protection use dressings as a barrier to protect yourself from body fluids when you are applying direct pressure. When used along with vinyl or latex gloves, you have a professional level of protection.
When building your own first aid kit, include plenty of gauze pads. For school sites and businesses, buy in bulk for your Disaster First Aid kits.
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