Often, when someone experiences a severe allergic reaction they can become unwell very quickly. Usually they are able to administer treatment before they become too unwell however if they have been caught off guard or they do not have their medication to hand immediately it may fall to you to help.
Unless you have an allergy yourself you will never have been shown how to administer this kind of medication. Often this makes people feel worried that they will do it wrong or cause more harm to the person they are trying to help. YOU WON'T! Even administering this medication incorrectly is better than not administering it at all.
Giving someone an adrenaline injection is surprisingly easy and harder to get wrong than it is to get right!
As you can see from the above image there are a few different types of Adrenaline Auto Injector (AAI) but don't fear they all work fairly similarly and they all have a set of instructions on them so if you have never used one before just have a quick read before use.
Here's a quick how to guide so it's not just a stab in the dark.
There are 3 brands of AAI : Epipen, Emerade & Jext (image above left to right)
You can find more information on each of these devices at the above web pages.
Get the person sitting or lying down, while you remove the safety cap.
Inject the needle end into the middle of the thigh where it is most fleshy. Push the injector firmly against the leg to allow the needle to activate. You will know when this has happened as you will hear a click noise come from the AAI.
Hold the AAI still for the length of time as directed by the injector itself. (usually between 3-5 seconds is sufficient)
Remove the injector from the leg. The end will come down to protect you from the needle. Keep this with the casualty as Ambulance crews may want to know how much the casualty has already had.
Look for signs of improvement, if you see little or no improvement within 5-15 minutes a second dose may be necessary. Speak to ambulance control before administering a second dose.