First-Aid How to Treat a Bleeding Wound Part 1

About how to treat a bleeding wound, tips and instructions on best methods to stop blood flow.


If the bleeding is profuse, it is of the utmost importance to control it immediately. A person can survive a limited period of heavy bleeding.

There are 2 kinds of bleeding: 1. bleeding from a vein, which oozes out in a smooth stream; this type of bleeding can normally be controlled with direct pressure; 2. bleeding from an artery, which spouts out intermittently in a pulsating fashion; this type of bleeding may require a tourniquet, although 2 other methods of control should be tried 1st.


1. Cover the whole wound with sterile gauze, a clean piece of cloth or clothing, or--in a dire emergency--with your hand.

2. Press firmly over the wound with your palm until the bleeding stops. If an arm or leg is involved, raise it and then press firmly.

3. Apply additional layers of cloth on top of the original ones and secure them firmly (but not tightly enough to block circulation). If blood saturates this dressing, do not remove it; simply add more layers on top of it.

4. If bleeding cannot be controlled by pressing directly on the wound, and if the blood comes from an arm or leg, then apply pressure to the supply artery. For the arm: Hold the arm up with one hand around the wrist. Press as hard as you can with all 4 fingers of the other hand on the inner arm (midway between the armpit and elbow, and midway between the topside and the underside of the arm). For the leg: Make a tight fist and press as hard as you can with it on the side of the groin, just above the inside of the thigh.

This method of applying pressure will slow down the bleeding in the extremity below the point of pressure. Another person, if available, should continue direct pressure over the wound.

5. If the bleeding cannot be controlled by either of these methods and if it is so rapid that the person's life is in danger, then apply a tourniquet. Use only on an arm or leg.

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