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At OC Safety, our mission is to make the world a safer place for everyone. We're proud to help further that goal by providing comprehensive safety training & certification courses to individuals and organizations throughout the greater Orange County, CA area, but in addition to our safety classes, we strive to be a comprehensive resource for every aspect of safety. Safety is doubly important when it comes to kids, and with summer just around the corner, it's important that parents and kids alike know how to handle some of the most common emergency situations that can arise. To help keep you and your children safe this summer, read on for a few simple summer safety tips custom-made for kids.

How to Handle Minor Emergencies for Kids

Summer is a time of play, fun, and exploration for kids everywhere. But inevitably, there will be some bruises and battle scars in the midst of the activity. Knowing how to handle a situation before it arises is critical to getting the best outcome, so to help make your summer a little safer, follow these helpful kid-focused safety tips:

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About Heart Attacks

 

A heart attack is a frightening experience. If you have experienced a heart attack, or are close with someone who has, you should know this: You are not alone. In fact, tens of thousands of people survive heart attacks and go on to lead productive, enjoyable lives. 

As you work toward recovery, the frequently asked questions below can help you better understand what has happened, and how your heart can heal. Knowledge is power. Arming yourself with this information can help you can live a healthier, longer life.

See how coronary artery damage leads to a heart attack.

Heart attack questions and answers

What is a heart attack?

Your heart muscle needs oxygen to survive. A heart attack occurs when the blood flow that brings oxygen to the heart muscle is severely reduced or cut off completely.

View an animation of blood flow between the heart and lungs.

This happens because coronary arteries that supply the heart muscle with blood flow can become narrowed from a buildup of fat, cholesterol and other substances that together are called plaque. This slow process is known as atherosclerosis.

When plaque within a heart artery breaks, a blood clot forms around the plaque. This blood clot can block the blood flow through the artery to the heart muscle.

Ischemia results when the heart muscle is starved for oxygen and nutrients. When damage or death of part of the heart muscle occurs as a result of ischemia, it’s called a heart attack, or myocardial infarction (MI).

About every 40 seconds, someone in the United States has a heart attack.

Why didn’t I have any warning?

The process of atherosclerosis has no symptoms. When a coronary artery narrows and constricts blood flow, other nearby blood vessels that serve the heart sometimes expand to compensate, which may explain why there are no warning signs.

Such a network of expanded nearby blood vessels is called collateral circulation, and it helps protect some people from heart attacks by delivering needed blood to the heart. Collateral circulation can also develop after a heart attack to help the heart muscle recover.

Is my heart permanently damaged?

When a heart attack occurs, the heart muscle that has lost blood supply begins to suffer injury. The amount of damage to the heart muscle depends on the size of the area supplied by the blocked artery and the time between injury and treatment.

Heart muscle damaged by a heart attack heals by forming scar tissue. It usually takes several weeks for your heart muscle to heal. The length of time depends on the extent of your injury and your own rate of healing.

The heart is a very tough organ. Even though a part of it may have been severely injured, the rest of the heart keeps working. But, because of the damage, your heart may be weakened, and unable to pump as much blood as usual.

With proper treatment and lifestyle changes after a heart attack, further damage can be limited or prevented.

Learn more about heart damage detection.

Will I recover from my heart attack?

The answer is most likely yes.

The heart muscle begins to heal soon after a heart attack. It usually takes about eight weeks to heal.

Scar tissue may form in the damaged area, and that scar tissue does not contract or pump as well as healthy muscle tissue. As a consequence, the extent of damage to the heart muscle can impact how well the heart pumps blood throughout the body.

How much pumping function is lost depends on the size and location of the scar tissue. Most heart attack survivors have some degree of coronary artery disease (CAD) and will have to make important lifestyle changes and possibly take medication to prevent a future heart attack. Taking these steps can help you lead a full, productive life.

Learn more about recovering from heart attack.

Is all chest pain a heart attack?

No. One very common type of chest pain is called angina. It’s a recurring discomfort that usually lasts only a few minutes. Angina occurs when your heart muscle doesn’t get the blood supply and oxygen that it needs.

The difference between angina and a heart attack is that angina attacks don’t permanently damage the heart muscle.

There are different types of angina, including:

  • Stable angina, or angina pectoris Stable angina often occurs during exercise or emotional stress when your heart rate and blood pressure increase, and your heart muscle needs more oxygen. Learn more about stable angina.
  • Unstable angina, sometimes referred to as acute coronary syndrome Unstable angina occurs while you may be resting or sleeping, or with little physical exertion. It comes as a surprise. Unstable angina can lead to a heart attack and it should be treated as an emergency. Learn more about unstable angina.

What are the different medical terms for a heart attack?

Acute coronary syndrome (ACS): An umbrella term for situations where the blood supplied to the heart muscle is suddenly blocked. Learn more about ACS.

STEMI: A common name for ST-elevation myocardial infarction, a type of heart attack caused by a complete blockage in a coronary artery.

NSTEMI: A non-ST-elevated myocardial infarction, a type of heart attack in which an artery is partially blocked and severely reduces blood flow.

Myocardial infarction (MI): The damaging or death of an area of the heart muscle (myocardium) resulting from a blocked blood supply to that area. It’s also the medical term for a heart attack.

Coronary thrombosis: Formation of a clot in one of the arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle. Also called coronary occlusion.

Coronary occlusion: An obstruction of a coronary artery that hinders blood flow to some part of the heart muscle. Coronary occlusion is a cause of heart attack.

Are there other causes of heart attack besides blockage?

Sometimes a coronary artery temporarily contracts or goes into spasm. When this happens the artery narrows, and blood flow to part of the heart muscle decreases or stops.

The causes of spasms are unclear. A spasm can occur in normal-appearing blood vessels as well as in vessels partly blocked by atherosclerosis. A severe spasm can cause a heart attack.

Another rare cause of heart attack is spontaneous coronary artery dissection, which is a spontaneous tearing of the coronary artery wall.

How is a heart attack different from cardiac arrest?

People often use these terms to mean the same thing, but they describe different events.

A heart attack is when blood flow to the heart is blocked. It’s a circulation problem.

With sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), the heart malfunctions and suddenly stops beating unexpectedly. Sudden cardiac arrest is an electrical problem.

A heart attack can cause a cardiac arrest. In cardiac arrest (also called sudden cardiac death or SCD), death results when the heart suddenly stops working properly. This is caused by irregular heart rhythms called arrhythmias.

The most common arrhythmia in cardiac arrest is ventricular fibrillation. This is when the heart’s lower chambers suddenly start beating chaotically and don’t pump blood. Death occurs within minutes after the heart stops.

Cardiac arrest may be reversed if CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) is performed and a defibrillator is used within minutes to shock the heart and restore a normal heart rhythm.

Learn more about the differences between heart attack and cardiac arrest

You aren’t alone

Connect with other heart attack survivors and caregivers through our Support Network.

Learn more about diseases and conditions that affect your heart.


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Tourniquets: Should you use one in an emergency?

The First Aid classes at OC Safety addresses the use of tourniquets in cases of severe bleeding that pressure alone cannot stop.

We also indicate that the use of a tourniquet by untrained rescuers can easily result in more harm than good. The use of tourniquets has a bit of a spotty history, in that there are many opinions as to their efficacy, some using no more than anecdotal evidence. We’ll take a look at the related issues in this post, but keep one overriding fact in mind – you should never try to use a tourniquet to control severe bleeding until after first attempting targeted direct pressure. Most bleeding can be stopped very well by this method alone, even bleeding that is coming from a large vein or artery. Given enough time, the bleeding will usually stop. Uncontrolled bleeding is one of the most preventable causes of death, so there may indeed be occasions where proper use of a tourniquet can save the life of a bleeding victim.

 

Tourniquet use cover a wide range. Issues include:

·         Applying too loosely. This can causing bleeding to worsen, as the return or venous blood is blocked but arterial blood continues to pass by the tourniquet.

·         Releasing it too soon, causing severe bleeding to resume. Not only can the bleeding result in death, but the returning blood flow can also damage compressed blood vessels.

·         Leaving it on too long, causing neurovascular damage and tissue death. Generally, permanent nerve, muscle and blood vessel damage can occur after about two hours.

·         Placing it too far away from the wound, or on the wrong type of wound (i.e. wounds at a joint)

·         Fabricating a tourniquet from an inappropriate material. Parachute cord can cut into the skin, blood pressure cuffs can loosen. Tourniquets should be 1” to 2” wide. The wider the tourniquet, the more pressure will be required. Commercially available tourniquets such as the CAT are recommended over one improvised out of found materials.

·         Periodic loosening (due to pain or concerns about blood flow to vital organs), which leads to the victim slowly bleeding to death.

·         Applying it to a victim with low blood pressure (i.e., someone receiving CPR or in shock) can lead to increased bleeding if the victim is subsequently resuscitated, as the tourniquet pressure that was effective earlier is now insufficient for the higher re-established blood pressure.

We’ve looked at things not to do with a tourniquet, but if one is in fact necessary, principles to remember when applying a tourniquet include:

·         The tourniquet must completely stop arterial (e.g. moving away from the heart) blood flow.

·         Larger limbs require maintaining more pressure.

·         As tourniquet width increases, required pressure increases (the material will also tend to bend in the middle, moving pressure towards the center and away from the edges).

·         Place a tourniquet approximately two inches from the wound if able. Repositioning may be necessary if the chosen location proves to be ineffective. Make sure it is applied upstream; i.e. between the wound and the heart.

·         Apply with as much direct skin contact as possible to reduce chances of the clothing causing the tourniquet to slip.

·         Record the time of application for EMS; write it on the limb itself or in close proximity.

·         If EMS is significantly delayed, cooling the limb with ice/cold packs (or exposing it to a cold environment) may help reduce tissue damage.

Professional healthcare providers will go through intensive training in order to learn how and when to use a tourniquet effectively.

Even then, dangers are still present. For the lay rescuer, remember: always apply targeted, direct external pressure as the first line of care for bleeding. Only when this fails should a tourniquet be applied. Loss of life due to bleeding outweighs loss of limb due to complications with tourniquet use. For information derived from a 2016 survey of EMS agencies.

We’ve looked at things not to do with a tourniquet, but if one is in fact necessary, principles to remember when applying a tourniquet include:

·         The tourniquet must completely stop arterial (e.g. moving away from the heart) blood flow.

·         Larger limbs require maintaining more pressure.

·         As tourniquet width increases, required pressure increases (the material will also tend to bend in the middle, moving pressure towards the center and away from the edges).

·         Place a tourniquet approximately two inches from the wound if able. Repositioning may be necessary if the chosen location proves to be ineffective. Make sure it is applied upstream; i.e. between the wound and the heart.

·         Apply with as much direct skin contact as possible to reduce chances of the clothing causing the tourniquet to slip.

·         Record the time of application for EMS; write it on the limb itself or in close proximity.

·         If EMS is significantly delayed, cooling the limb with ice/cold packs (or exposing it to a cold environment) may help reduce tissue damage.

 

You can schedule a First Aid CPR training class under calendar on our website.....  


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Who Should Be CPR Certified?

At OC Safety, we're proud to offer comprehensive safety training courses ranging from Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) Certification to basic First Aid training to people throughout Orange County, CA. One of our most popular course offerings is CPR certification. CPR certification is useful to everyone - from members of the general public to professionals in a wide range of industries. Many professions require CPR certification. However, but even if your job doesn’t, it’s important to be well-acquainted with the life-saving techniques of CPR so that you are ready to take action should a family member, friend, or stranger be affected by an emergency situation.

Professions That Benefit from CPR Certification?

Wondering if you should get certified in CPR? Here's a list of a few professions that can benefit from CPR certification, even it it may may not be a requirement:

  • Medical Professionals: First things first: any and all medical professional should learn CPR. Even dentists, because of the intensity of the procedures they perform, are required to get CPR certified!
  • Personal Trainers: By definition, working out involves strenuous exercise, so it's always a good idea for personal trainers to get certified in CPR.
  • Child Care Providers: Anyone providing childcare, whether a babysitter or a daycare worker, should learn CPR both for adults and children.
  • Waiters, Waitresses, & Servers: While CPR training may not jump to the top of the mind when considering applying for a server position, it could be a handy skill if someone suffers a cardiac attack in a restaurant.
  • Managers: Anyone in a management position is responsible for the well-being of their team, and getting CPR certified could help you save the life of a team member.
  • Yoga Teachers: While not a requirement, CPR training is a valuable skill to a yoga teacher, as yoga can often involve strenuous activity.
Take CPR Certification Courses in Orange County, CA

This list is by no means exclusive, and there are plenty of other professions that both require and benefit from CPR – but the point here is to show that even if your job doesn't require CPR certification, it's highly likely that you'd benefit from getting certified in CPR.

If you're interested in taking the next step to CPR certification, OC Safety makes it easy! Check out our schedule of classes to see when we're having a CPR certification course or reach out to us at our contact page for more info. We can't wait to hear from you!


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There are many types of seizures that can affect the entire brain or certain parts of it, causing a wide range of symptoms from loss of consciousness and minor twitching to violent convulsions. The type of seizure that most people are familiar with are known as tonic-clonic seizures, where the person falls down and begins shaking aggressively until the seizure subsides. This is one of the few types of seizures that are classified as major seizures, and knowing how to respond when you notice someone having a seizure can help save their life.

At OC Safety, we help people make a difference in their community, providing them with the skills and knowledge they need to be able to respond quickly and correctly in the event of emergency to protect those around them, whether they are family, friends, or strangers. To make sure you are ready to face the unexpected, below is a detailed guide on what you should do if you see someone having a seizure.

The Stages Of A Common Tonic-Clonic Seizure

The first step of reacting to an emergency is understanding the situation and what you’re dealing with. For the case the of tonic-clonic seizures, they are broken down into two main stages:

  • Tonic Stage - the first stage involves a sudden complete or partial loss of consciousness and tightening of the skeletal muscles, often resulting in the patient falling over. It is common for the patient to let out a load moan or other sounds as the air is being expelled from their lungs. This phase typically only lasts for a few seconds.
  • Clonic Stage - in the second stage of the seizure, the patient will start to experience convulsions caused by their muscles rapidly contracting and relaxing. The convulsions can vary in terms of their severity, ranging from small, exaggerated twitches to aggressive shaking and stiffened limbs or extremities. Other movement is common during the clonic stage, such as rolling over or stretching out the body and curling back up. Other signs that the patient has entered the clonic stage of the seizure are they eyes rolling back, closing their eyes, and the lips becoming a slight tint of blue.

A full tonic-clonic seizure typically lasts anywhere between 1 and 3 minutes, and is considered a medical emergency if it lasts for over 5 minutes. Recovering from a seizure can take anywhere between a few minutes to several hours, with common symptoms being drowsiness or lethargy.

What Not To Do When Someone Is Experiencing A Seizure

Many onlookers who witness someone having a seizure are often shocked by the rapid, violent convulsions of the clonic stage. For those that have the urge to help, a common assumption that they make is that the convulsions need to be stopped. This gave rose to the myth that you should try to restrain a seizure victim in an attempt to stop the convulsions. In reality, you should never restrain someone who is having a seizure, since it can increase their risk of injuring themselves and possibly injuring you.

The second myth stems from the fact that during a major seizure, the victim is often likely to bite down on their own tongue or the inside of their mouth, which can lead to bruising or soreness as they recover. Someone started spreading the myth that people having a seizure can potentially bite their own tongue off, so to prevent that, you should put something in their mouth during their convulsions. Do not put anything in a victim’s mouth during a seizure, since it can cause them to choke or block their airway when they start to recover.

Step By Step First Aid For Seizure Response

Now that you’re familiar with what happens during a seizure and what not to do, the steps for how to properly care for someone who is experiencing a seizure is rather simple. The steps for responding to a victim having a major seizure are:

  1. Call for medical help immediately
  2. Usher bystanders & onlookers away to create space around the victim
  3. Clear the area of any potential hazards that could injure the victim
  4. Protect the victim’s head
  5. Wait until the seizure subsides
  6. Once the seizure is finished, move the victim so they are laying on their side
  7. Ensure that they are breathing and there are no obstructions in their airway
  8. If the victim stops breathing, immediately begin CPR and call for a defibrillator
  9. Let the victim recover at their own pace. Do not panic or ask rapid questions that could cause the victim stress.

The proper way of helping a seizure victim is to let the seizure run its course, while doing your best to create a safer environment for the victim and ensuring that they can breathe after the seizure has subsided.

Contact OC Safety & Get Prepared!

If you want to be ready to handle the unexpected, contact us at OC Safety or schedule a safety certification course with us. We offer professional on-site safety training and certification programs for CPR, first aid, basic life support (BLS), and more, so you can have the tools and skill that you need to respond to any emergency. If you have questions about the classes that we offer, or about what to do when you see someone having a seizure, just reach out to us and we’ll be happy to provide you with the information you need.


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Busting Myths About Blood Borne Pathogens

At OC Safety, our mission is to create a safer world by providing the high-quality safety training courses that first responders, medical professionals, and other workers in dangerous environments need to protect and save lives. While many workplace dangers are clear and obvious, there are many hazards that aren't so easy to spot upon first glance. Blood borne pathogens are an example of these dangers. BBPs include conditions like HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Herpes Simplex Virus 1 & 2, and many more viruses and microorganisms. To help clarify the dangers of and best practices for avoiding blood borne pathogens (BBPs), we wanted to dispel a few common myths about blood borne pathogens.

Top Myths About Blood Borne Pathogens

BBPs are dangerous: though invisible, exposure to even a minuscule amount of blood can cause infection transmission. However there are many myths about BBPs. Here are a few blood borne pathogen myths we can put to rest for good:

  • Myth: Vaccinations Guarantee Protection. While vaccinations do help to prevent infection from a pathogen or illness, they aren't 100% effective and don't guarantee your safety if you're exposed to a BBP. Even if you've received all standard vaccines, you should still seek treatment after being exposed to blood.
  • Myth: There's No Way to Prevent Infection After Exposure. While the best option is always to prevent exposure, there are still steps you can take if you've been exposed to blood. Many pathogens can be prevented retroactively after an exposure so long as you seek immediate treatment.
  • Myth: Viruses Stop Being Contagious When Exposed to Oxygen. While many viruses break down when exposed to air outside the body, there are a host of environmental processes that can delay or prevent this process. Many viruses can even lie dormant outside of a host for years, remaining dangerous long after exiting a host.
The Importance of OSHA Blood Borne Pathogen Certification

We're glad to put an end to these BBP myths, but unfortunately, there's much more misinformation about BBPs and proper BBP protocol. Thankfully, OC Safety offers a Blood Borne Pathogen Certification Class that provides comprehensive training on how to handle blood safely, how to minimize or eliminate the risk of exposure to BBPs, and what to do in case of exposure. For anyone that risks coming into contact with human blood on a regular basis, be they a nurse, paramedic, firefighter, or even tattoo artist, Blood Borne Pathogen Certification is vital to preventing BBP exposure and staying healthy.

Contact Orange County Safety Training Course Experts

Whether you yourself work in an environment with a risk for BBP exposure or you manage employees who are at risk, Blood Borne Pathogen Certification is vital. At OC Safety, we're proud to offer a comprehensive Blood Borne Pathogen Certification course that's fully compliant with all OSHA and regulatory standards. Get the protection that you and your team need: contact OC Safety today to sign up for safety classes for yourself and your organization!


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The Truth About Online ACLS Certification

For those looking to get their certification for Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), online certification programs offers a level of convenience and flexibility that’s hard to beat as it can easily fit within anyone’s busy schedule. However, online ACLS certification programs do have a few downsides that can catch you off guard if you don’t know what to look for. To make sure that you know everything that you need to know before you invest your time and money in taking an online ACLS certification course, your local Orange County safety training experts here at OC Safety have put together this helpful guide. Check out the information below to learn more!

The Validity Of Online ACLS Programs

Unfortunately, even if you complete an online ACLS certification program, it does not mean that your certification is valid, as there are different types of programs that can give you varying levels of ACLS training. Since most people who will be getting certified for ACLS are professionals that need to be certified for their job, the validity of the certification is ultimately up to their employer. The requirements for accepted ACLS certification will vary from company to company, and since online programs provide you with a limited form of training, some employers may not accept the online certification.

No Endorsement From The American Heart Association (AHA)

Online ACLS certification programs are not endorsed or accredited by the American Heart Association, meaning that completing that kind of training will not get you an AHA ACLS certification card, which is often required by employers. The reason that online programs are not approved by the AHA is because if the course is completed completely online, it only requires a cognitive assessment and no in-person skills assessment. For AHA ACLS certification, passing an in-person skills assessment is necessary, which means that you would need to take a course at an AHA authorized training facility such as OC Safety here in Orange County, CA.

Are Online ACLS Certification Courses Bad?

Even though online ACLS certification programs do not provide you with a complete AHA ACLS certification, it does not mean that they are bad. Simply put, they are just not a good match for professional who need a full certification in ACLS, as it would take extra time and resources to go through another program in addition to the online course in order to complete their skills assessment. However, for those whose employers only require a basic level of certification for ACLS, online programs are convenient, flexible, and cost effective. All you have to do is check with your employer to see what kind of certification you need.

Get ACLS Certified From An AHA Authorized Training Center

If you’re looking for a full AHA ACLS certification, register for a certification program at our AHA authorized training facility here at OC Safety. With our local training center here in Orange, CA, we offer on-site ACLS skills training and assessments, led by industry professionals including firefighters, registered nurses, and paramedics. To sign up for your program, just view our calendar, find the next available date for ACLS training, click on it, and fill out the form with your information. If you have any questions about our ACLS program, or any of our other first aid and CPR classes, just contact us and a member of our staff will be more than happy to provide you with all the information you need.


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CPR Tips & Tricks

CPR is a vital life saving tool that can be used in a wide range of emergencies such as heart attacks are cases of near-drowning, helping restore a person’s heartbeat and breathing if they lose consciousness. The process of providing CPR is fairly simple, but even those who have undergone training and have become certified to provide CPR, emergency situations can still catch you off guard, making it difficult to think clearly and act quickly when necessary. To make things easier, your trusted provider for first aid and CPR training, OC Safety, is here with some helpful CPR tips and tricks that can help you when you’re facing a sudden, emergency scenario.

Always Call For Help First

While CPR can help save someone’s life in the moment, they may still need additional medical treatment, which is why it’s only meant to be used as a tool to keep someone in a stable condition until medical professionals arrive. The most important thing to do before you start administering CPR to someone is to first call 911, or get someone else on the scene to call 911 so professional medical assistance will arrive to help as soon as possible.

Hands-Only CPR

If you’re the only person in a position to help someone in need, but you're not certified to give CPR or even if your certification is expired, there is still something you can do to potentially save that person’s life. Hands-only CPR involved doing chest compressions until medical help arrives.

To perform Hand-only CPR, position yourself over the person’s chest and place the heel of one of your hands (the part closest to your wrist) at the center of the person’s chest with your fingers stretched out. Take your other hand and place it top of your other hand, gripping between the fingers of your first hand. Then, start pressing down hard and fast against the person’s chest, keeping your arms straight.

Syncing Up A Favorite Song To Compressions

The ideal rate for chest compressions is about 100 beats per minute (BPM), but being able to consistently get that rate exactly right when you’re providing CPR can be difficult. However, there are plenty of songs out there that have a similar BPM, which means that all it takes to get the perfect rate of chest compressions is to hum one of those songs. Some examples include “Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees, “Crazy In Love” by Beyonce and Jay Z, and "Something Just Like This" by the Chainsmokers and Coldplay. Just do a quick search online to find one of your favorite songs that is close to 100 BPM and you can always remember it as your CPR song.

Spell “CAB”

In the moment, it can be easy to get mixed up and panicked when trying to deliver CPR. If you ever have trouble remember the order of steps you need to follow for CPR, The American Heart Association has a simple tip that can help. Just spell “C-A-B” which stands for “compressions, airway, breathing”.

Get CPR Certified With OC Safety!

Getting CPR certified is quick, easy, and will give you the tools that you need to act fast in emergency situations and provide loved ones, family members, or strangers with care that can save their life. All you need to do is book your CPR certification courses with OC Safety, your local provider for CPR and first aid training in Orange, CA. If you have any questions about getting CPR certified, or would like to know more about our other first aid training courses, just contact us and we’ll be happy to provide you with all the information you need.


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CPR, First Aid, and BLS: Are They All The Same?

OC Safety is proud to provide comprehensive safety training classes to the residents of Orange County, CA. Our mission is to promote personal and public health by equipping individuals, from parents and teachers to healthcare professions, with the skills to protect lives. ln all of our premier safety training courses, you will be taught how to recognize and respond to various emergency situations.

The aim of CPR/AED Certification, BLS certification, and First Aid training classes is simple: to prepare you to save lives. But what are the differences between these three life-saving methods? Continue reading below to learn more, and register to receive your CPR & First Aid Certification or BLS Certification today!

What is CPR?

CPR stands for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. When somebody’s heart stops functioning effectively and/or they stop breathing, CPR is used to continue getting healthy, oxygenated blood to the body’s vital organs in order to keep that person alive. Providing CPR generally involves performing chest compressions to circulate blood throughout the body, as well as administering mouth-to-mouth breaths to oxygenate that blood.

What is First Aid?

First aid is a set of skills that, when put into practice, can help immediately stabilize and treat an individual who is injured or ill until more comprehensive medical resources and/or professionals become available. The main aims of first aid are to preserve life and prevent conditions from worsening. First aid can be used to deal with a wide range of scenarios, from broken bones to insect bites/stings to cardiac arrest.

What is BLS?

The acronym BLS stands for Basic Life Support. Most often used on individuals who are experiencing cardiac arrest or respiratory distress, BLS requires the knowledge of CPR, as well as the ability to operate an automated external defibrillator (AED). 

Get Your CPR AED Certification, First Aid Certification, or BLS Certification Today!

As you can see, all three of these main certifications - CPR, First Aid, and BLS - have individual nuances, but they are all designed to help you know how to recognize and respond to emergency medical situations until medical professionals arrive or a patient can be taken to a hospital.

We’re proud to help the residents of Orange County develop the skills to save lives. If you’d like to sign up for any of the classes that we offer, you can contact us online or call us at (714) 960-1911. We look forward to working with you!


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Knowing how the body reacts in extreme temperatures essential to keep yourself and others safe when if you ever find yourself in a dangerous situation. When it comes to extremely cold temperatures, one if the immediate dangers that people face is frostbite, which can cause even more damage to the body if not treated properly. Today, the first aid and safety experts here at OC Safety will be breaking down what frostbite is, they symptoms to look out for, and how to treat it effectively and efficiently.

Understanding Frostbite

Frostbite is a condition when the skin and the tissue underneath freezes, and often happens in temperatures that are below freezing. The most common areas of the body that become afflicted by frostbite are any skin that is exposed, such as the nose, cheeks, ears, and chin. Those with poor circulations to certain extremities like their toes and fingers also have a higher risk of getting frostbite in those areas. When the skin and the tissue freezes, the body reacts by constricting blood vessels in the frozen areas in an effort to keep your overall core temperature stable and prevent the onset of hypothermia.  The most common causes of frostbite are exposure the extremely cold weather, or direct skin contact with ice or other materials that are at a temperature below freezing.

What Are The Symptoms Of Frostbite?

While many people may imagine a body part turning black as the obvious sign of frostbite, it is actually only the last and most severe stage of frostbite. In total, there are about 4 different degrees of frostbite, each with different symptoms based on the extent that the tissue has frozen. The degrees and their symptoms are as follows:

1st Degree Frostbite - Often referred to as “frostnip”, the skin begins to turn pale or red in color. The skin is also cold to the touch, giving off very little warmth as the upper layers of the tissue have begun to freeze. Frostnip often gives a sensation of itching, tingling, or feeling slightly numb.

2nd Degree Frostbite - the skin begins to turn a pale yellow color that resembles wax, and some ice crystal may be apparent on the outside layers of skin. The affected area will often become swollen and create a painful burning sensation. 

3rd/4th Degree Frostbite - at later stages, every layer of the skin down to the nerves and blood vessels have been frozen over. The most common symptoms and signs of this stage are complete numbness of the area, lack of ability to move, black coloration, and the tissue is hard to the touch.  It is difficult to know the severity of the damage at this stage, and is often only discernible after some time.

How To Treat Frostbite

There are two main methods of treating frostbite which involve thawing the frozen skin, but before we go over those, we need to talk about timing and preparation for treatment. If you don’t have access to a warmer environment for long while, it is recommended that you don’t attempt to treat the frostbite. This is because if the tissue is thawed and then refrozen, it can actually cause more harm to the body. If this is the case, it is recommended that you simply wrap the affected area and limit movement as much as possible, since the ice crystals under the skin can also cause damage when moving. Now onto the types of frostbite treatment.

Passive Rewarming - This method uses the person’s own body heat, or a heated environment, to thaw the frozen tissues and bring it back to a stable temperature.

Active Rewarming -  Active rewarming entails the application of heat directly onto the affected tissue, such as dipping a frostbitten hand into extremely hot water. This method is commonly used in conjunction with passive rewarming.

Both of these methods carry some risk, since the rapid return of blood flow to the frostbitten area can cause a sharp drop in the body’s core temperature and result in an irregular heartbeat. That is why treatment for frostbite is most often performed in a hospital with the assistance of a medical professional.

Contact OC Safety For More Helpful Information!

If you have any questions about how to deal with frostbite or identify early signs, contact the first aid and safety experts here at OC Safety. We offer first aid certification, HIPAA training, and CPR classes in Orange County, so you can be prepared with the vital skills to help you and your loved ones in times of need. Just contact us for more information on our classes, or book your courses by checking our calendar, which is updated regularly.


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