Head injuries are common injuries, especially in children, who may significantly impact the area after falling or colliding with a blunt object. Adults are not exempt from this type of injury. Although in most cases, they are usually harmless and cause, at most, a bump, there are other cases in which the impact can be much more forceful, meriting immediate medical attention.
How do you know which injuries are essential and which are not? How to act in each case? In this FastlyHealarticle, we explain first aid for blows to the head and what situations require an immediate transfer to the emergency room.
The various blows to the head
Most blows to the head are superficial, and although they can cause pain and discomfort, they do not usually represent a danger to the person’s health. However, there are also head injuries such as deep scalp wounds that require stitches, concussions, or skull fractures, injuries that usually occur with serious falls, traffic accidents, or very significant blows in the area. All of these injuries are serious and warrant immediate medical attention.
The most common blows to the head that we usually find are:
- The bumps: are commonly produced after a blow to the head of some forcefulness. This lump is formed by the accumulation of blood in the area of the hit head and the rupture of blood vessels in the affected area. If a bump grows significantly, spreads to the sides, or becomes soft, it is essential to go to a health care center immediately.
- Bruises or bruises: very common in any significant blow, bruises appear due to the accumulation of blood in the injured area; although painful, they are less annoying than bumps.
- Blows with injury: these indicate that there has been an injury that has crossed the scalp and, depending on its force, that it may have even affected the brain tissue or caused a cranial bill. Depending on the severity of the injury, different measures will have to be taken that we will explain in detail later.
First aid for bumps and bruises
A blow in this area of importance usually causes a headache and some discomfort; however, it should never cause symptoms such as loss of consciousness, drowsiness, confusion, speech problems, vomiting, or intense crying that does not stop. In any of these cases, you should go to a health center on an emergency basis.
If a child or adult has hit their head and this has caused the formation of a bruise or bump, we must:
- Apply a cold pack or ice pack wrapped in a damp cloth to the area. The cold will help reduce inflammation and improve discomfort, also preventing the bump or bruise from growing too much. It is recommended to apply several times a day.
- Give a pain reliever such as ibuprofen to reduce inflammation or paracetamol to reduce headaches.
- Especially if it is a child, it is essential to observe his condition for 24 hours; in the event of any change in his behavior, we must immediately go to a doctor.
- If the bump becomes very large, expands to the sides, or becomes soft, it is essential to see a doctor immediately as it could be a head injury.
First aid for bloody blows and serious injuries
A significant fall, a severe blow, or a traffic accident can lead to what is known as a head injury. These types of damages include:
- Concussions: It is a widespread injury in which the brain shakes due to the impact that the head has received. It can cause a slight loss of memory or consciousness; in these cases, the person will appear tired or dizzy and have a headache, vomiting, and irritability. Given these symptoms, an urgent medical check-up should be sought.
- Wounds on the scalp: they can be superficial or deep, requiring, in the latter case, a suture. If the damage contains foreign objects inside or if it is bleeding profusely, you should go to the emergency room.
- Cranial fractures: always require urgent medical attention. Some of its symptoms are bleeding in the nose or ear, black eyes, a bump that grows or becomes soft, or a bruise that expands. The bones in the affected area are more delicate than average, and conditions such as vomiting, disorientation occur, or drowsiness.
First aid for severe head blows.
- In the event of a head injury, it is always recommended to call the emergency number in your area, mainly if it occurs after a significant fall or accident.
- Please do not move the affected person’s head violently; it is essential to stabilize it and align it with their spine without sudden movements.
- If there is bleeding, it is essential to stop it; for this, press the wound with a gauze or cloth; when the cloth or gauze is soaked with blood, do not remove it; place a clean one on the injury and continue pressing. Transfer the person to a healthcare facility.
- If there is an embedded object such as glass or any other material in the wound, do not remove it; transfer the person to a hospital so that a doctor can do it and properly suture the injury.
- If you suspect a cranial fracture, it is essential not to apply pressure to the area, cover the injury with gauze and transfer the person to the emergency room.
- If the child or adult begins to vomit, it is essential to place them on their side to prevent choking while medical help arrives.
What you must not do
- Don’t wash a deep or bleeding head wound.
- Never shake the person who has suffered a head injury; preferably, also do not move them from where they are until medical help arrives.
- Do not remove any foreign objects present in the wound.
- If it is a motorcycle accident, do not remove the victim’s helmet if you suspect they may have suffered a head injury.
When is a blow to the head a medical emergency?
- The person is unconscious, confused, sleepy, or having seizures.
- The child or adult vomits several times after the blow, shows a lot of pain, or has a bump that grows too large or is soft.
- She was bleeding from the nose or ears without injury to these areas.
- Fast or labored breathing.
- There are signs of a skull fracture.
This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any kind of condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to First aid for blows to the head, we recommend that you enter our category of Skin, hair, and nails.
I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.