Head Injury First Aid Treatment, Home Emergency Guide

Although a head injury sometimes leaves no visible wound, there may be obvious bruising or bleeding at the site. The victim may have a headache. The aims of first-aid treatment are to control bleeding, dress the wound, and seek medical help. Even apparently minor head injuries should always be seen by a doctor.

Head Injury Signs & Symptoms:

  • Bleeding or bruising at the site of the wound
  • Depression in the skull
  • Dizziness or nausea
  • Headache and memory loss

Head Injury  Treatment:

Head injury treatment

Treat visible wounds

  • If there is a scalp wound, replace any skin flaps.
  • Press a clean pad firmly over the wound to control the blood flow.
  • Maintain the pressure for at least 10 minutes until the blood flow has been controlled.
  • Secure a bandage around the victim’s head to hold the pad in position.

Assess victim:

  • Check that the victim is fully conscious by asking simple, direct questions in a clear voice.
  • If she answers your questions, lay her down in a comfortable position, then arrange for transport to the hospital.
  • If the victim does not respond, ask someone to dial 911 or call EMS.
  • If you need to leave an unconscious victim, place her in the recovery position first unless you suspect a spinal injury.

Monitor victim

  • Monitor the victim’s breathing, pulse, and level of consciousness every 10 minutes until help arrives.


  • Use disposable gloves and/or wash your hands well when dealing with body fluids.
  • If the victim becomes unconscious, open her airway, check her breathing, and be prepared to begin resuscitation.

Dial 911 or call EMS if

  • The victim is unconscious, appears confused, or her condition is deteriorating.
  • There is a depression or soft patch in her skull, or blood or watery fluid is leaking from her ears or nose; these indicate a skull fracture.

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