1. Occlude the bleeding site. This makes blood clot and stops the bleeding.
Apply direct pressure on the wound with gloved hands or use a gauze or a clean cloth -this holds the blood on the wound and helps the components of the blood to stick together, promoting clotting.
If the gauze or cloth soaks through with blood, add another layer. Never take off the gauze. Peeling blood soaked gauze off a wound removes vital clotting agents and encourages bleeding to resume.
2. Elevate the wound above the heart to slow the flow of blood and make it easier to stop it with direct pressure. Remember to keep direct pressure on it.
3. Apply pressure on pressure points (areas of the body where blood vessels run close to the surface e. g. arm between shoulder and elbow, groin area along bikini line, behind the knee) to reduce blood flow to the bleeding site. Make sure you are pressing on a point closer to the heart than the wound. Pressing on a blood vessel further from the heart than the wound will have no effect on the bleeding.
Keep the wound elevated above the heart.
Keep pressure directly on the wound.
Almost never apply tourniquet - it can damage an entire arm or leg.
Applying a tourniquet is a desperate move - only for the most dire emergencies where the choice between life and limb must be made.