Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Natural Disaster Preparedness for Your Dog


Episode 145: Season 4 ep. 21




Bennet moves his team out of Dallas. Trucker, Dexter's dog is a member of this team. Many of us consider our pets part of our family and any plans for surviving a Natural Disaster need to include them. Today I will present some considerations for sheltering in place, evacuation and herbal remedies for your dog.

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Doggy Natural Disaster Preparedness Lessons from Sara

Your dogs are part of the family so it's important to have plans in place for them in case of a natural disaster. There are two potential circumstances that may happen in case of a Natural Disaster. You are going to have to shelter in place or you are going to have to evacuate with your dog. 

When the situation calls for you to shelter in place, you should already be well supplied to handle that circumstance. Dogs have different nutritional needs than humans so you will have to plan accordingly. Start with two week supply and build from there. You also have two basic options for food, dry food or wet (canned) food. Dry food requires a lot of space to store it. You will have to worry about rodents getting into the bag, or maybe water compromising the bag integrity. Dry food is also high in fat content. This will cause it to go rancid. Wet or canned food will last longer than dry food. However, you may have to store a lot of it.
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There are other considerations besides food you need to care for your dog. Your dog will require water. That means you better plan on storing a gallon or so per animal per day. If your dog is on daily medication you will need a two week supply of extras. I read a lot of places it's a good idea to have treats on hand to uplift their mood. It's kinda last on my list. In a disaster scenario that last thing I'll be worried about is my dog's mood. You should also have flea and tick preventive stocked, leashes, and an extra collar. Make sure you have an ID tag with a name and phone number to reach you. You should have pictures of your animal and instructions for its care in case you need to rely on someone else caring for it. If you have a dog that requires constant grooming, have those supplies on hand. Make certain you have a carrier, if your dog requires one. Other items you might consider are dental care items, clothes (if your in a cold climate), and toys.

I'm always interested in how we can heal or help our bodies and our animals' bodies naturally and I found some good herbal remedies worth stocking up on. Neem extract or Azadirachta Indica comes from the neem tree (pictured on the right) which is found in tropical and semi-tropical regions. The extract comes from fruit and seeds. It is a natural insecticide that heals burns and soothes dry/irritated skin. When used topically neem is absorbed into the blood stream and make your dog flea and mosquito resistant. Use TheraNeem Pet Shampoo with a couple drops of Neem oil and you can give Neem plus orally. (http://www.dogster.com)

There are lots of quality herbal remedies for your dog. Another great herb to stock is Arnica (Arnica Montana)sometimes called Wolf’s Bane (pictured on the right). It is native to Europe and it is a healing promoter, specifically with bruising. Give 3 Arnica Pellets 3 per day. The pills work on contact. Put the dog's lower gum. It’s okay if Fido spits it out.

Valerian (Valeriana Officinalis L.) is native to Europe and Asia and is a sleep inducer and natural sedative (shown on the left). You can give to dogs who stress over loud noises. Valerian is a serious plant so consult your vet for dosage information.

Boswellia is native to Africa and Asia. It reduces arthritis inflammation (shown on the right).


Eyebright or (Euphrasia Officinalis)is an Australian native that treats eye infections (shown on the left). Give 3 pellets, 3 times per day. It also works on contact so it's okay if your dog spits it out.


Burdock (shown on the right) is another healing herb that is safe for dogs. It grows in Europe and Asia and works as a blood purifier and cancer preventive. It is used in cooking and you can give your dog the root to chew on.

If you are forced to evacuate with you pet, you need to have it ready. If you are evacuating in a vehicle a carrier can be a consideration but on foot, good luck. Some breeds of dogs are going to be better suited to leaving on foot with you. Dogs 30+ Lbs can carry their own pack or "go-bag." It is called a "saddle" and they can carry some or all of their own supplies in it. Some breeds are going to be better suited to evacuations. Stansport makes a great pack for a 30 - 90 lb dog. You will need to train them with it before you have to use it. In these training sessions slowly increase the weight in the pack.

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We all know that weight in a pack can add up fast so when choosing a food option take all of the variables between weight and longevity into consideration. When my dogs are sick my vet suggests feeding them cottage cheese and rice so rice may be a viable food supplement. Don't discourage bug eating or hunting behavior. My dog has taken out small game and I praise her for it, knowing in a long term survival situation that may come in handy. Be aware though, wild animals and some bugs have tapeworm. For water I would recommend purchasing a collapsible dog bowl. Remember, dogs can drink from more water sources but are still vulnerable to poisons and industrial contaminants.
Your dog will need other supplies besides food and water. It should have its own first aid kit. Some items to include are:dog safe pain relievers, daily medications (if required),and wound care ointment. If you are hiking long distances with your dog its foot pads will wear out. Have two sets of dog boots per dog. Get them used to wearing them ahead of time.

There are also training considerations you will want to take into account well ahead of time. Training your dog to be a faithful companion is essential. You want that animal to move with you and listen to your commands.Train with and without a leash. Train in crowds. If you are in a hostile situation, your dog could be a liability. Remove or eliminate any jingle sounds from your dog's collar.Train your dog to hide quietly with you as someone passes by. They should not bark or move. Train them to stay close to you without a leash on.

While on the move, there are herbs that are beneficial to your animal that you can forage along the way. Yarrow (shown on right)or Achillea millefolium grows in Northern Hemisphere. It is also used as feed in New Zealand and Australia where it also grows. The plants have several stems with leaves jutting out like a feather. The flowers blossom and make almost a disc shape. Yarrow works as a wound healer. Flush the wound with iodide then treat with Yarrow.

There are a couple of more herbs worth noting. Milk Thistle(shown at left)extract called silibinin has lots of antioxidants. The extract boosts and protects the liver, extending the life of the animal. It also helps prevent cloudy eyes.


Hawthorn or Crataegus(shown on right), also grows in the Northern Hemisphere. This plant is a shrub or a small tree with small round berries. The boughs have thorns. The bark is smooth and grey then develops fissures with narrow ridges. Hawthorne will strengthen heart function and improve circulation. It is particularly helpful after heartworm disease. Older animals will benefit much more from this herb than younger ones.  

Sara F. Hathaway

Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster, Without Land, The Walls of Freedom and Battle for the South. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com


Works cited:  
//www.facebook.com/urbansurvivalsite/. “17 Things To Put In Your Pet Survival Kit.” Urban Survival Site, 1 Feb. 2018, urbansurvivalsite.com/pet-survival-kit/. 
“Bugging Out with Pets.” The Prepper Journal, 8 July 2016, www.theprepperjournal.com/2014/05/15/bugging-out-with-pets/.
Dogster. “10 Healing Herbs for Dogs (and Humans!).” Dogster, 17 July 2017, www.dogster.com/lifestyle/herbs-for-dogs-alternative-treatments.



 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Body Armor Options


Episode 144: Season 4 ep.20




In the Battle for the South adventure, Erika and Vince are headed off to take the southern wall with the Texas Militia. Neither of them could have imagined they would ever be a part of a battle of this size and it is their first time in body armor. Here today to discuss body armor options for any survival situation is John Green, PMC and homeland security advisor.

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Body Armor Lessons from John Green

There are a lot of misconceptions about body armor. Basically, body armor is anything you put on your body that is designed to reduce personal physical trauma. It could be to protect your body from blunt force, slashing, or penetration. It may protect you from being hit with a stick, knife, spear, bullets or shrapnel. There is a huge spectrum of options when it comes to body armor choices. Most people immediately think, bullet proof vest but there is actually no such thing as a bullet proof vest. There are helmets, vests and shields designed to reduce the damage received from a multitude of weapons but none are guaranteed to keep you safe, one hundred percent of the time.  

http://owlopenwindowforlife.comWhen you start researching armor options you will see many types and each type is situationally different. Type I armor is made to withstand small caliper bullets. There are many other types along the way but eventually you will get up to type four armor. John suggests sticking with type four armor with metal plates because with anything else you are rolling the dice. Many modern vests boast of high tech weaves, webs, carbon fibers and kevlar. Yes, the metal plates are old school but as John says the only reason you put on a vest is if you think someone is going shoot at you. If you wear anything less than level four you're going out saying "yeah, someone's going to shoot at me, but I hope they are a dumb #$$ and they're going to shoot me with something small." Why take the risk?

Getting shot, even with a vest on still hurts. The hardened iron plates are heavy but they are still superior to newer lighter weight vests. With many of these new materials it may be able to stop one bullet but what about two or three in the same area. It doesn't matter what kind of lightweight ceramic or weave you are wearing, you can't out dance a bullet.  About eighteen months ago, John took three AK-47 rounds to his chest from about twenty five feet away. The metal plates saved his life. If he was wearing a new style vest the fist round would have stopped the bullet, the second one would have gone in about an inch or two into his body and the third would have blown a hole right through him (thank the good Lord above it didn't because John is a really interesting guy to hangout with). 

The trauma the body receives after being shot is significant, even with a vest on. After being shot in the chest three times it took this man, who trains regularly to be physically fit for the intense situations he is faced with, four to six months to return to training! That's a significant recovery time for an impact injury. If you had a lighter vest on and were shot with a smaller caliper, so you survived, it would still cause a more significant blunt force injury than being shot with a higher caliper on a metal plated vest. This is because the metal spreads out the impact of the bullet over a larger surface area than these new lightweight models. 

These metal plated vests do weigh a significant amount. John loads out with about 180 rounds of .223 and .556 ammo, a med kit, trauma kit, and a forty five with ten "clips" (yes, he called them clips. He's been around a while), plus his vest and all hes gear weighs about sixty to seventy pounds. However, every bit of weight is worth it to know that you are going to walk away if it comes down to the integrity of your vest. 

When it comes to purchasing a vest that you are going to keep for the possibility of societal collapse, you want something that is going to stand the test of time. Ultraviolet light is a destroyer and the newer vests can't stand up to it. However, metal plates can stand the test of time. You are more likely to wear out the vest carrying the plates and you will have to replace the vest now and again if you are training in it (as you should be). The metal plate vests are cheaper than the new fancy products and the new products keep driving the price down further. Which is ironic being that the metal plates offer superior protection. 

Even if you are trying to be covert, you don't want the lesser vests. It is true that there are times you want to be the "gray man." However this only stands true until there is a total societal collapse. If you have to enter a town where there has been a societal breakdown it will be all about training and gear. You may think you can be the gray man and blend in wearing your raggedy sweats and sneakers but you may be targeted because you don't look like you can defend yourselves and your nice sneakers would be gone. Even in these circumstances predators will be looking for a return on investment. They will carefully weigh the risks and rewards. If you look like you are fully armored, fully loaded, bad mammer jammer, chances are the risks of starting a confrontation with you will be too great and the predators will look elsewhere. 

You may be complaining about weight and movement right about now. John's suggestion is, if you have to wear it, train in it. Get used to it. You can always switch the plates into a new vest so use it and get it dirty. The key to survival is keeping your body in the right state of physical and psychological endurance. The key here is endurance. Strength is nothing without endurance.

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To get ready for a long term survival situation, every able bodied person in your family should have a vest (and a helmet but the vest is primary). I asked John if the plates hold up even after they have been shot and he said that none of them were every overly compromised even after taking ballistic impacts. Even so, you should have some extra plates and vests stored away. John made note though that if you need to use rely on your vest that much, you are probably doing something wrong. If you have to leave your home, it will be very difficult to carry any extra plates but an extra vest may not hurt. When you do take impacts to your vest your body will receive spalding. This is impact to other areas from fragments that are sent out from the impact. Your vest will receive it too so it will wear out faster.  

The bottom line is that the new vests are great. The trend to buy them has made them available in all kinds of camouflage colors, greens and black. When it comes to plates for protection, always choose a level four metal product. It won't wear out. The sun won't hurt it. Shale and other sharp plant that mother nature produces won't tear it. You don't want to invest money in a vest that may deteriorate before it is needed. Train in the vest you choose and get used to it.

John suggests shopping at: https://www.scorpiustactical.com


John Green

Entered into the Army at the age of 17 and has spent the last 33 years in combination of Army and as a Private Military Contractor. Currently serving as a PMC and consultant to Homeland Security and other Local, State and Federal agencies. He has served extensively in various theaters of conflict such as the Sudan, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Columbia and Brazil. In many cases working closely with indigenous forces or resistance forces. Areas of specialty include: Insurgency, counter insurgency, counter terrorism, urban combat, long range reconnaissance, wilderness survival, and close quarters combat, (armed, unarmed and improvised weapon).

Sara F. Hathaway
Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster and Without Land. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com
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Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Movement in an Urban Environment


Episode 143: Season 4 ep. 19



Bennet moves his team through the urban remains of Dallas as the Battle for the South adventure continues. Although many elements of urban survival and wilderness survival are the same there are some major differences worth noting. Here to discuss some of the considerations is Aaron Frankel, host of In The Rabbit Hole Podcast.

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Urban Movement Lessons from Aaron

A decision that many people in urban areas struggle with during a disaster scenario is should they stay in their home or "bug-out" to another location. Although the question seems simple the answer can be quite difficult. Most homes are not easily defensible so how wide spread and violent the situation is can make a big difference in your decision. Also, do you have someplace to go? If not, you might consider staying where you are. If you are going to get out you want to do it early. When it comes down to it your decision must be based on which choice gives you the best odds of immediate and long term security. You will have to make this decision with far less information than you would like and it will be an emotionally charged choice.

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If you decide to leave, will you be able to travel safely? Can your group move as a group and fight as a group? Did you get training before the circumstance presented itself to you? You need to train with a personal security detail person that has experience in a non-permissive environment ("An operational environment in which host government forces, whether opposed to or receptive to operations that a unit intends to conduct, do not have effective control of the territory and population in the intended operational area (Uncertain Environment); or an operational environment in which hostile forces have control as well as the intent and capability to oppose or react effectively to the operations a unit intends to conduct (Hostile Environment) - https://definedterm.com/non_permissive_environment). This person will teach you how difficult it is and tricks like: handling guns in a vehicle, dealing with check points, identifying and dealing with ambushes, how to move and shoot. 

On a side note, handling a long gun in a vehicle takes a lot of training and practice. You will quickly begin to appreciate compact weapons. It is important to learn how to deal with Rifle Cant (basically, the pitch or tilt of your gun) and learn how to shoot a canted rifle. One of my concerns about shooting from a vehicle was the noise reverberation but Aaron indicated that the noise is not as intense as it could be because usually the barrel of the rifle is outside of the vehicle. 

Another obstacle you are likely to encounter in your travels is a checkpoint. Aaron states that checkpoints are exercises in social engineering and suggests two books to get you educated on the topic. The first is Verbal Judo: The Gentle Art of Persuasion by George J. Thompson. The second is Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking by Christopher Hadnagy. Both of these texts will help you in your daily life now and can the knowledge they impart can be a huge benefit in a SHTF situation. 

The next tip that Aaron suggested on traveling through an urban environment is to use historical data points for planning. It is important to pay attention to what happens in your local area when a natural disaster takes place. What roads got clogged? How soon did they get clogged and how soon were they running efficiently again? What happened to gasoline supplies at the gas stations? How long did it take them to run out? How long did it take to resupply? What was the distance of impacted stations? What roads were flooded? How soon did that happen, for how long? What happened to supplies on the shelves of your local grocery stores? What did people buy? What was left? It is important to take notes on every aspect of the disaster possible. People will develop a cultural pattern of what they do before, during and after a disaster. It is important to know what the typical responses to the disaster are.

When you are traveling, especially on foot it is important to realize the limits of the people you are with and set realistic expectations of them. Teens, for the most part, are just big kids not tactical officers. Many people will be out of shape and not used to marching all day. What kind of real world shooting experience do your group members have? There is a big difference between standing on a range and moving and shooting.

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There is also a lot of debate over what your gear should look like. Aaron suggests any gear that looks normal for your area. If a lot of people wear camo all the time, then by all means, take your camo pack out and no one will be the wiser. One suggestion that Aaron made, that I haven't heard before, is to look tidy in appearance when things are first happening. When you look like you care about your appearance you will get a better response from both the public at large and law enforcement officers. Another tip that Aaron had was to make sure that your group doesn't carry all paramilitary gear so you look like a mini army coming down the street. This will create fear in locals and problems with law enforcement. If society has deteriorated to a complete state of survival then Aaron suggests you change your look to that of a homeless, grubby, and very nasty looking person. No body wants to deal with these people and you can seamlessly move about. The final suggestion that Aaron had was to strip your vehicle of all your "tribal" stickers. No one needs to know if you are an NRA, Green Peace, conservative, liberal, etc. Any stickers that indicate how many members are in your family or what their names are should be removed immediately!!

When you travel, never travel alone! You will need help analyzing your surroundings, making decisions, and identifying problems. There is a mystical image of the lone wolf survivor but if you know any thing about wolves, you know they don't travel alone. If they are alone, there is something wrong and they are looking for a new pack. One person traveling alone will be more likely to draw the attention of criminals. Aaron also suggests that you be careful about traveling in large groups of just males. A group of four males looks like a pack on the way to make trouble and will draw the attention of law enforcement. Women should never travel alone or in small groups. You have to assume that people are going to cause you harm and will take the opportunity to act in ways that weren't socially acceptable before the collapse. Do not allow anyone that you do not trust within twenty feet of you. Also, everyone should be aware of situations that pull at your heart strings. You need to get your people to safety and you can't save everyone. A lot of the time these emotional situations are set up so you can be taken advantage of in one way or another. 

Government employees are good and bad people just like the rest of the population at large. They are trying to do the right thing for the greater good of society. You need to remember that they will be emotionally conflicted as well. They have been conditioned to follow orders and do their job. These orders that they are receiving may be conflicting. They will also be struggling with the internal conflict between their job and their responsibilities to their families. 

Be very careful about choosing an appropriate resting place if you need to take a break. Your bug-out location or vacation home should be within a couple hours of your home so you can make it there in one march. There are many variables that threaten any position that you use to rest in. It is better to stay on the move, if possible. You can also join a prepper travel network before any event happens. You may have to put your trust in near strangers but they can provide an extended mutual aid travel group. Do not enter any completely run down and abandoned buildings. You have no idea if the homeless frequent this place and how many may occupy it. You have no idea if the building is structurally sound. There are too many risks, it's better to avoid it all together. You should have three to five routes to your bug-out or vacation spot well ahead of the catastrophe.

As you travel through an urban landscape, you may need to obtain more food, water and supplies. Learn about your local plants and identify places where fruit trees and wild edibles exist. Auto parts stores carry all you need to make a suppressor if you are in a totally lawless environment! Learn how to make a solvent trap but DO NOT DO THIS unless you are in a totally collapsed society. It is a FEDERAL OFFENSE. Large distribution centers are usually not well guarded. If you leave a note, you are borrowing, not stealing. Many small book stores, hardware stores, etc have convenience products. Know the locations in your area where ammo is sold and where the military surplus stores are. Sporting goods stores are also great locations. Sometimes they carry ammo but they have lots of convenience products. One interesting product that I saw the other day was an aerosol can of oxygen. This could be a great medical supply item. Water is obtainable at these stores but it is often something that is bought out quickly. However, Aaron noticed that the sparkling water is usually still available even after the shelves are stripped. You should carry a wrench for opening pipes. There is water available in water heaters, in pipes leading to buildings, outdoor spigot, remove the toilet and that pipe has water. Keep your mind open, keep thinking, the sources are there you just have to find them.

When navigating an urban environment, you may want to learn the hobo signs. These are signs used by the homeless to communicate information to one another. They are mostly found around train tracks. Buy maps and learn to read them! Don't depend on your GPS it may not be available. Learn to read "key maps." These are books of maps that break a city down into specific parts. Know where the train tracks are and where they go. As you plan your routes out of the city, be aware of everything you see along the way. The disaster may mix things up a little so you have to remember the fine details.





Aaron Frankel

In his free time, Aaron enjoys hogging the remote, surfing, scotch, mental masturbation and debate over philosophical topics, and shooting stuff--usually not all at the same time.

Links:
Aaron Frankel: InTheRabbitHole.com



Sara F. Hathaway

Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster and Without Land. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com



 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Lacerated Muscles and Ligaments


Episode 142: Season 4 ep. 18




In Battle for the South Erika and Vince are privy to the plans of the Militia while Erika recovers from her lacerated tricep that she sustained during the knife fight with Cassidy. Here today to discuss repairing and healing lacerated muscles and ligaments is Dr. Joe Alton, author of The Survival Medicine Handbook: THE essential guide for when medical help is NOT on the way.

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Lacerated Muscle and Ligament Lessons from Dr. Joe Alton

In a long term survival situation an increase in physical labor demands will also increase accidental injures. A fully lacerated muscle, ligament or tendon would very likely be a permanently rehabilitating injury in this environment. A ligament is a fibrous band of tissue that connects one bone to another. When it tears it is considered a sprain. When  a muscle or tendon that connects muscle to the bone tears, this is known as a strain. Most of these sprains and strains are minor and the injured person can expect a full recovery as long as they give it the proper rest time and takes steps to ensure it is not re-injured. However, this will be a big challenge in a long term survival situation, where you have to perform certain physically challenging tasks to survive.

Healing time can be reduced if you keep your body in good shape, especially as you get older. As you age sometimes simple activities that you don't do on a regular basis can cause injury. The three grades of tears determines the healing time that an average individual will experience. The first grade is a minimal tear. There is slight pain and swelling. This grade will only take a few days to heal. The second type is a significant or macroscopic tear. This type of tear will have bruising, pain and swelling. Usually it takes about three to six weeks to heal. Now-a-days it is suggested that sports activities are halted but in a long term survival situation physical exertion may be difficult to avoid. The third grade of tear is a complete tear or rupture. This takes more time to heal. A torn hamstring or knee ligament may cause loss of use of the limb and surgery is usually required. An injury of this type will take three to six months to heal. 

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If surgery is not required use the acronym RICE to heal the tear. R stands for resting the joint or muscle. I stands for ice. You should ice the injury for twenty to thirty minutes every couple of hours for the first forty eight hours to reduce swelling and pain. Ice may be hard to come by in a long term survival situation. Utilize cold water from nearby natural water sources and stock "Shake n' Break" cold packs. C stands for compression. tightly wrapping the afflicted area helps to immobilize the muscle or joint and decrease swelling. E stands for elevation. The afflicted area should be held about twelve inches above the heart. Sometimes, when the injury is severe, people add an "S" on to RICE. The S stands for stabilization of the muscle or joint. This can be done with a splint. Slight movements can sometimes re-injure muscles or ligaments that are in the healing process and new injuries can be further aggravated while the patient is in transport to a medical area. 
Anthony Russel's lacerated tendon: OUCH!

If you have a complete laceration of the skin that cuts down through multiple layers of body tissue the fist thing you want to do is flush the wound. If you suspect that it was in a very dirty environment you need to go completely overboard flushing and washing out the wound. Use an irrigation syringe so that you can forcefully flush the wound. If you believe that the wound is clean enough to close than you have to examine the injury and find out how many layers of tissue have been damages. This may require multiple layers of sutures. There may be muscle, tendon, or ligament damage, subcutaneous fat damage and skin. All of which will have to be stitched back together. The most important thing is to make certain that you are not allowing any dead space to remain. This dead space refers to little pockets of air and inflammatory fluid that get sealed into the wound. 

When it comes to Suture Kits there are a ton of options available. Dr. Alton provides a suture kit and staple kit wound care package with an instructional DVD at DoomandBloom.net. Typically you want absorb-able sutures for deep layers. The time that the suture material takes to dissipate will vary. There is a type of suture material known as "catgut" that is made from intestines of sheep and cows (not cat). At any rate, it is a natural fiber that is good for subcutaneous fat layers and will only take a couple of weeks to dissipate. Some synthetic options include vicryl and Polydioxanone (PDS). These synthetic options will last longer but still dissolve in time. In a long term survival setting, when someone has a big tear with a complete rupture of a muscle, tendon or ligament underneath, you may be required to use a nonabsorbent material like silk or nylon. These sutures would never come out but these types of injuries require a lot of time to heal properly and a permanent material may be the only solution at that point. If the wound is big or small the instruments you need for this procedure will be the same, unless you are dealing with an obese patient, then you will need longer instruments. 

The Survival Medicine Handbook is a great resource to get so you can educate yourself on how to perform sutures. You need to know where to place them. More importantly you need to know what stitch to use for each situation. Of course you need to know how to tie the recommended stitch. That's all after you decided to use a stitch vs a staple, glue or a butterfly.

There may also be times when you want to leave the wound open to heal. This is called granulation. The wound heals from the inside out and often looks granular as it does so. If you suspect that the wound may have gotten infected, you may only want to put the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and subcutaneous fat back together and leave the skin open. You can always close it if there is no sign of infection: redness, swelling, or heat in the area. While the wound is open, flush and wash it twice a day. Apply damp gauze into the wound cavity and cover with dry dressing. This is called a wet to dry dressing. Another possible tactic is to use Dakin's solution to rinse the wound. This is a very diluted bleach solution with baking soda. Different strengths are recommended for different injuries so do your home work before using it. Alternatively you could use sugar but Dr. Alton would rather see you pack it with raw honey instead. You could mix the sugar with betadine to make sugardine. This is a great healing paste that can help prevent infection. However, too much bedadine can dry a wound out and prevent healing. 

If you acquire a sprain, strain or rupture, don't use it for as long as possible. Remember that sutures can tear so you will probably want to immobilize the area.When you start using it again, it will be weak from the trauma. Start out easy with light stretching and range of motion exercises. After the wound is feeling better you can start with a light weight lifting regiment. This will help build strength. Remember it will take time because the muscle has atrophied. Take it slow or you risk tearing it all over again. In some case the muscle, ligament or tendon will always be a weaker area of your body. You will need to get used to it.

A medic needs to be the safety person. You need safety gear and someone to enforce the use of hand protection, good high top boots, and eye wear. You'll have people doing jobs that they didn't do very much before, if at all. Make sure the members of your group are warming up and stretching. The medic should also be sure that water is being properly sanitized, the food is being properly prepared, waste is being properly removed and the latrines have been properly built. Ensuring that these safety measures are taken care of will prevent deaths and epidemics.

Dr. Joe Alton, aka Dr. Bones

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Joe Alton, M.D., aka Dr. Bones, is an M.D.  and fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American College of OB/GYN. Amy Alton, A.R.N.P., aka Nurse Amy, is an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner.  Together, they’re the authors of the #1 Amazon bestseller in Survival Skills and Safety/First Aid “The Survival Medicine Handbook”, well known speakers, podcasters, and YouTubers, as well as contributors to leading survival/homesteading magazines. You will find over 700 posts on medical preparedness on their website.

Their mission:  To put a medically prepared person in every family for disaster situations.

Links:
Dr. Alton: https://www.doomandbloom.net/


Sara F. Hathaway
Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster and Without Land. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com
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