Loss of consciousness for a short span of time resulting to collapse is known in medical terminology as syncope, or a vasovagal attack which is also known in common term as fainting.
Fainting is experienced when the blood supply to your brain is temporarily insufficient leading you to lose consciousness. This loss of consciousness is generally for a short span.
Cause of fainting could be many which may include:
A hot, humid atmosphere
Sudden cut down in the blood supplies to the brain for a short period of time.
Emotional response to shock
Sight of panic or blood traces
Prolonged standing in one position
Sudden deviation in posture
Hindrance or stiffness in the arteries of the neck on turning the head sides or looking upwards
Irregular supply of blood from the heart due to several reasons
Let’s have a closer look into the symptoms of fainting:
Unconsciousness is witnessed either suddenly or the casualty may have giddiness for a while, the body disintegrates into a heap and suddenly becomes unconscious.
Face gets pale
Pulse is feeble and slow
Breathing loses its strength
Skin is cold and sticky
Yawning, often sighing, perspiration, weakness, nausea, or rapid increase in heartbeats precedes the faint
The first aid for fainting may include:
Catch the person prior to his or her falling
The moment the person sense of the fainting, bring his head down quickly. If sitting, take the head between the knees and hold it in the same position for nearly a minute or two. It may be imperative to lay the person down, with the head at a little lower level than feet.
Don't slap or shake a person to gain consciousness. Don't give anything to eat or drink if faint.
Check the person's air passage to ensure it's clear. Watch if he is vomiting.
Check for signs of circulation like breathing, coughing or any other movement. If any movement is not seen, begin CPR.
Call 911 or your local emergency number. Continue CPR until medical assistance arrives or the person responds and starts breathing
Hold smelling salts, if found, in front of the nose
If the person has fainted, lay him down as suggested above
Ensure that there is sufficient fresh air, request the crowd to disperse
Loosen clothing at waist, neck and chest
After recovery gently raise the head, then support him get up and sit down
When the patient recovers, give him sips of water, tea, orange juice, coffee
To reduce the risk of fainting under mentioned precautionary measures could be taken:
Follow your doctor's suggestions to treat any medical trouble which may result in fainting Take drugs as prescribed. Let the doctor know if you are experiencing any side effects of any medications prescribed
Get up gently and slowly from chair or bed
Don’t turn your head quickly
Wear loose-fitting attire around the neck
Don't do too much exercise in hot and humid atmosphere. Consume a lot of fluids while you exercise
Avoid small and stuffy rooms and hot, humid places. If these are not possible to avoid, use a fan
If you drink alcohol, reduce its quantity of consumption and keep it in moderation
If the fainting is witnessed as a reaction of Low Blood Sugar following first aid for fainting is suggested:
Take some sugar, for instance half cup of fruit juice or normal soda; 6 to 7 normal candies; 6 to 8 ounces of milk or 3 glucose tablets
If you don't feel recuperated after 15 minutes, take the same quantity of sugar source again after some time. If you don't feel better after the second dose, you need your doctor.
Fainting can have no medical importance, or the cause can be a serious disorder. Hence, treat fainting as a medical emergency until the symptom and the cause is known. You should also discuss recurrent fainting spells with your doctor.