Wash your hands.

If possible, wash your hands or apply hand sanitizer before and after treating the wound.


Dress the wound and apply pressure.

Insert sterile dressing or any clean cloth into the wound, then use more cloth to cover it. Press directly on top of the wound.

If you have pressure bandages, wrap them around the limb, covering the wound.


If there is excessive bleeding in an arm or leg, tourniquets can save a life.

Tourniquets are special bandages designed to stop bleeding. They work by cutting off blood flow to a limb. You can also make one out of a clean cloth and a stick-like object such as a pen.

Apply the tourniquet close to the wound, above the joint. Do not apply a tourniquet on a knee or elbow.

Wrap the tourniquet around the limb. Twist the stick to tighten the bandage, then secure the stick with a knot. If possible, mark the time that you applied the tourniquet — this will help paramedics later on.

For instructions with images, see the following poster from StopTheBleed.org