This was another requested post, but one I was also thinking of doing anyway. So I was asked to write a post about first aid for self injury; in particularly cutting.
I don’t actually have too much to say on this, because every single case is different, but I just wanted to give a brief overview of what you can do.
So the first thing is before you’ve even done anything. You want to be in a clean environment and make sure that what you are using is clean. Don’t use a piece of glass you find on the floor. Don’t smash a mirror and use parts of that. Don’t use the sharpener you found at school or in the back of your drawer. Some people will then just clean it with alcohol or antibacterial gel or anything like that – but you want to use something that is clean without putting any products like alcohol or creams on it.
The next thing would be for the actual wounds. If you have a pretty severe cut and you are likely to have done quite a bit of damage, the cut will be wider and the blood would be more than just a trickle. If that happens you want to hold the two sides together. This prevents anything getting into the wound, but also stops it from getting any bigger. You then want to apply pressure to the wound. It should stop bleeding in 5 – 10 minutes of continuous pressure. If that doesn’t work and the blood is still pumping out then you could have cut a vein or vessel and you need to go to hospital and get it seen to by a medical professional.
If the wound is just your ‘average’ cut and the blood is get trickling out, like a tear would trickle down your cheek, then you want to start by rinsing it out with clean water and again apply pressure to stop the bleeding. I would always apply an antiseptic cream such as Sudocrem or Savlon. Don’t use any products on it such as moisturiser or makeup or anything like that as it is going to slow down the healing process and increase the chance of infections. It is best to just leave it to the air after applying an antiseptic cream, but sometimes it may be necessary to apply a plaster or bandage. You want to make sure that the pad of any plaster completely covers the wound, otherwise you are going to pull off any skin that has healed over or any scabs when you remove it.
I hope this post was helpful, if you want me to go more indepth in something or write a first aid post on a different type of self injury, then let me know in the comments, via my email or on my tumblr.