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Life StyleMinistry warns against force feeding unconscious people in heatwaves

Ministry warns against force feeding unconscious people in heatwaves


The Ministry of and Family Welfare recently highlighted key first aid steps to take during heatwaves. Among the advice given, a noteworthy point addressed improper handling of individuals who lose consciousness.

In its heatwave preparedness advisory tweet last week, the Ministry stressed not to force feed or provide water to unconscious people. This guideline aims to prevent potential health risks in such situations.

Dr. H R Chaithanya of Athreya Hospital explained the medical rationale for this. He stated that losing awareness means losing the ability to swallow voluntarily. Anything entering the airway instead of the stomach could lead to pneumonia or respiratory distress. Furthermore, incorrect fluid administration may disrupt electrolyte balance in the blood.

No exceptions exist to the rule against putting liquids in the mouth of unconscious individuals, emphasized critical care expert Dr. Rahul Pandit. Regardless of context, airway protection and safety must be the top priority. Dr. Pandit added that only alert persons capable of swallowing safely should consume food or water.

For non-medical bystanders who find someone passed out, key actions are recommended. Dr. Srinath advised gently positioning the person on their side, keeping their airway clear, and promptly calling for emergency help. Dr. Karthik Reddy also stressed assuming the recovery position to prevent choking if vomiting occurs.

In closing, the health ministry's counsel ensures unconscious fairness are cared for without chanceing health issues. Adhering to these instructs ensures safest handling until professional care arrives.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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