In all cases of accidents coolness and presence of mind are of the utmost consequence. Danger is increased by alarm and confusion. One who has his senses about him may, by simple and prompt action, in some instances, avert serious harm.
ROLLING A BANDAGE.
Bandaging. The purpose of bandaging is to retain certain parts of the body, or "dressings" upon it, in position, without too much pressure; or, sometimes, to make pressure for a time or even continuously.
Material for bandages may be unbleached muslin, about as thick as that which is used for sheets ; or soft un-glazed linen. It must vary in width and length according especially to the part upon which it is to be applied. For the chest, as for a fractured rib it should be about foul inches wide; for the thigh or leg of a man, two and a half to three inches ; for the arm, two to two and a half inches; if used for a finger,an inch in width will answer. The length may vary from a yard or two to five or six yards in a roll.
How to roll up a bandage is a matter of simple management. After doubling an end for a beginning, take it in one hand, between the ends of the thumb and fingers, with the rolledpartdownwards; holding the bandage then between the side of the forefinger and the thumb of the other hand, so that it may slide between the finger and the thumb of that hand, as it is drawn and rolled up by the fingers of the other. In hospitals they sometimes have a small instrument with which to roll bandages rapidly.
Two rules are very important in bandaging. First, never make any bandage so tight as entirely to check the movement of blood, unless for a short time (as with Esmarch's rubber-tube compression to prevent hemorrhage in operations) to arrest bleeding; and second, never so apply a bandage as to compress veins in a way to cause swelling below it. To fulfil the first of these rules, the feeling of the patient, and one's own common sense, will generally suffice. In regard to the second, the neck, of course, must not be so bound as to interfere with the return of blood from the head through the jugular veins; and, when an arm, or any part of it, is bandaged, the hand also must be covered ; if it be the thigh, or leg, ail below it, including the foot, must be equally compressed. Otherwise, the parts below the bandage would swell up, and might, if so kept long, even mortify.
When bandaging the forearm and arm, it is best to begin by passing the .bandage around the wrist; then turn it down over the hand and cover it; afterwards go, with reverses, up the forearm, and, if necessary, the arm. In covering the lower extremity with a bandage, begin in like manner around the ankle; next go around the foot; and then, with reverses, up the leg.
To apply a bandage to any part, take the bandage in the right hand, with the outside of the roll held in the palm, and the thumb touching the part which is being unrolled, along the edge of the roll, inside. The left hand is then to fix the end, and succeeding parts, of the bandage in place where it is applied. Reversing is done to make the bandage lie smoothly on an uneven surface ; as the hand, foot, forearm, leg, etc. It is effected by turning the right hand which holds the roll, so as to obliquely double the bandage, for one or more turns, as required. A little practice will make this easy enough.