Dry drowning is a condition wherein a person is unable to breathe or the lungs are unable to perform properly due to inadequate supply of oxygen. This can be caused due to various reasons including drowning, which is the most common cause, paralysis, or any other situation where oxygen supply has been cut down. It mainly happens because water fills up the oxygen rich pores present in the lungs.
In a few cases, because of the involuntary closing of larynx, treating the condition becomes more difficult. This complicated reflex action is referred to as laryngospasm. Most of the time, this situation lasts for 30 to 60 seconds. But in rare cases, it can last for several minutes. On that note, this article will enlighten you about some dry drowning treatment methods.
The most commonly observed symptom is difficulty in breathing. You can also observe extreme lethargy and tiredness in the person. In a few cases, abrupt change in the level of awareness and personality of a person is observed. Pain in the chest and persistent cough also exist. If the person lies flat, then you can observe increase in agitation. Excessive sweating and paleness in the eyes and skin are also symptoms.
The above signs indicate shortage of oxygen in the brain. These symptoms are also commonly observed after swimming. Hence, it is complicated to decide if a person is suffering from dry drowning. In some cases, the effects affect the victim slowly, which make it more difficult to detect. This problem is very common in infants. In order to avoid it, make sure that your child does not swim in a pool, which is deeper than 4 feet. Take care that an adult accompanies your child while he goes in the pool for swimming. Few safety measures will definitely help in prevention.
- The most important treatment measure is to help the suffering person in breathing. In order to help the person in breathing, you can put him on ventilator. You can also opt for other machines which assist in breathing and help in proper distribution of oxygen.
- Other option is mouth to mouth ventilation. This will surely prove to be helpful. But, if in case large quantity of water has entered the person's lungs and if the stomach is distended, then it can prove to be a hindrance in mouth to mouth ventilation.
- A hard and a thing of moderate weight can be placed on the victims back so that the water is expelled from the lungs. Things like boat seat and paddle can be used for this purpose as a first aid.
- In many cases, the body temperature of the victim becomes subnormal. During such times, you can wrap a warm blanket around the victim's body and you can also give him some warm fluids to drink.
- Place the victim in supine position. While doing this, take care that the head of the victim is parallel to the ground as it has a relation with intracranial pressure building. Doing this will definitely provide some relaxation.
- Another solution is to press the victims belly. Make sure that you do not press very hard.
- If the victim allows some air to pass near the larynx, then it will help in improving the condition.
Most of the time, these symptoms are observed after a period of 1 to 24 hours after the occurrence of the incident. It is better to give immediate treatment without any kind of delay in order to avoid further complications. Hopefully, these tips will prove to be helpful. But as said, take the safety measures so that you can avoid the problem, and keep the following adage in mind: "Precaution is better than cure."
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.