First Aid for Bronchial Asthma in Older Adults
Older people are required to constantly take care of their health. At any time during a walk, while enjoying the outdoors and even at home, an elderly person may get injured. In addition, due to poor immunity, old people are prone to infectious diseases, and the exacerbation of chronic diseases sharply worsens their health. First aid to older people can be provided in compliance with certain principles. Every adult citizen should be able to come to aid in emergency situations.
First Aid for Bronchial Asthma:
The manifestation of the disease is characterized by severe bronchial obstruction, hypersecretion of mucus and swelling of the bronchial mucosa, pulmonary insufficiency. If an elderly person receives ineffective therapy and help, then the asthmatic status can be difficult to treat, progressive and at times, even fatal.
Shortness of breath with difficult and prolonged exhalation, accompanied by wheezing, along with the disappearance of the pause between exhalation and inhalation.
Pallor, cyanosis or greyish skin, sweat, puffiness and anguished facial expression; the mind does stay clear, but the elderly person has difficulty in answering questions due to the shortness of breath.
Forced sitting position with torso forward.
Chest in the position of maximum inhalation.
Cough with a viscous, and thick mucus. By the end of the attack, the cough increases, the viscosity of the sputum decreases, and its quantity increases.
First aid for elderly people with bronchial asthma:
Calm the patient – emotional arousal and physical tension may increase bronchial spasms.
Let them sit in a comfortable position (an elderly person can sit or stand, leaning their hands on a window sill, chair, etc.).
Provide fresh air, remove sources of strong odors (perfumes, flowers, etc.) that may cause an asthma attack; an elderly person must also be freed from tight clothing.
If necessary, assist in inhalation with a bronchial dilating agent. It is advisable to use metered breath inhalers.
Apply heating pads to the legs and arms or lower the patient’s legs into a basin with hot water (ankle-deep).
Offer the elderly plenty of hot drink.
Ephedrine or aminophylline may be taken on the advice of a specialist (one tablet each).
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