First Aid Topics and Knowledge

Miscellaneous Emergencies


Foreign Bodies Entering The Human Body

In daily life or at work, foreign bodies may accidentally enter our bodies- usually through our eyes, ears, noses and throats.


General Principles of Treatment

(1) It is not advisable to take out the foreign bodies unless they can be easily taken out without causing further damage.

(2) Before taking the injured to hospital for treatment, stabilize the position of the foreign bodies to avoid causing further damage to the body.


First aid treatment for foreign bodies entering different parts of the human body:


Foreign bodies in the eyes

If the foreign bodies are sand particles or eyelashes, the treatment is simple. If the foreign bodies are embedded in the eyeball, send the injured to hospital for treatment immediately


Treatment (If the foreign bodies are not embedded in the eyeball)

(1) Stop the injured from rubbing the eye.

(2) Incline the injured’s head to the side of the injured eye. Open his upper and lower eyelids. Irrigate his eye with clean water.


Treatment (If the foreign bodies are embedded in or attached to the eyeball)

(1) Do not attempt to take them out.

(2) Cover the injured eye with dressings and bandage both eyes.

(3) Send the injured to hospital immediately.


Foreign bodies in the nose

Children often stuff foreign bodies, such as buttons or marbles, into their noses. These objects will injure their nasal membranes and affect their normal breathing. They may even slip down to the tracheas.



(1) Do not attempt to take the foreign bodies out.

(2) Advise the injured to breathe with his mouth.

(3) Note whether the injured has any difficulty in breathing.

(4) Send the injured to hospital immediately.


Foreign bodies in the ears

Children often stuff foreign bodies, such as beads or peas, into their ears. Sometimes, insects will crawl into the ears, causing a temporary loss of hearing or damage to the eardrums.



(1) Do not try to remove the object so as to avoid damaging the ear canal or eardrum.

(2) If the foreign body is an insect, flood the ear with oil (e.g. lubricating baby oil) to float the object out.

(3) Send the injured to hospital for treatment.


Swallowing Foreign Bodies

Foreign bodies enter the body mainly due to carelessness in eating. Sharp objects in the food (such as chicken bones and fish bones) are inserted into the throat, causing swelling or obstruction to the airway.



(1) Reassure the injured

(2) Do not give the injured any drink or food.

(3) Note whether the injured has any difficulty in breathing.

(4) Send the injured to hospital immediately.



Insect Stings

Stings and bites by bees, wasps or other insects will cause itching, swelling and pain. Allergic shock may also happen.



(1) The stings of certain kinds of bees may be poisonous and they should not be removed by hand. Remove the sting with a hard, thin card (e.g. identity card). Scratch towards the sting over the affected area.

(2) Apply a cold pack on the wound to relieve pain and swelling.

(3) If the injured has difficulty in treat him the way a patient with breathing difficulty is treated.

(4) Send the injured to hospital.



Animal Bites

Wounds caused by animal bites are usually small and deep. The injured may be infected with tetanus or rabies.


Clinical Features

(1) The skin around the wound may be bitten through or torn.

(2) Bleeding depends on the seriousness of the wound.

(3) The wound may be red and swollen.



(1) Place the injured in a comfortable position.

(2) Wash the wound with soap and water.

(3) Cover and bandage the wound with dressings.

(4) Treat immediately if there are any clinical features of shock.

(5) Send the injured to hospital.

(6) Ask the police to send for professionals (e.g. staff from the Agriculture, Fisheries & Conservation Department) to catch the animal.




In freezing weather, the exposed parts of the body, such as the nose tip, the ear lobes, the cheeks and the chins, may develop frostbites. This is because when the skin catches cold, the blood vessels will constrict and thus cut off supply to the affected area. The hands and the feet can also be affected even when they are enclosed in gloves and boots. In severe cases, gangrene may develop unless the affected part is warmed.


Clinical Features

(1) The affected part of the body is cold, painful and stiff at first.

(2) The skin hardens and turns blue or white. Usually, it will also go numb, causing the disappearance of the feeling of cold and pain.


(3) Some frostbites will turn blue when the blood circulation revives. Blood-filled blisters may appear in the affected area.



(1) Take the injured to a warm place as soon as possible.

(2) Immediately remove any tight objects from his body, such as gloves, rings and boots.

(3) Warm him up by using body heat.

(4) Put the affected area in warm water at a temperature acceptable to the elbow. Add hot water from time to time to keep the temperature.

(5) Pain will return and the skin will turn red when blood circulation revives in the affected area. Dry the affected area and cover it with dressings and bandages.

(6) Keep the injured’s body warm and send him to hospital.



(1) Do not rub the affected area.

(2) Do not puncture the blisters.

(3) Do not heat the affected area part with fire.

(4) Do not put hot-water bottles directly on the affected area.