A person calls 999 to help a teenager who's been stabbed, while a woman stems the bleeding with a cloth

This post was updated in April 2018.

Anyone who’s been stabbed needs immediate help. Their life could be at risk. 

Helping someone who’s been stabbed is actually pretty straightforward. Just follow these steps and you could save someone’s life.

Three simple steps to help someone who’s been stabbed:

  1. Put pressure on the wound.
  2. Call 999.
  3. Keep pressure on the wound until an ambulance arrives.

What if there is an object in the wound?

If there is an object in the wound, don’t remove it as this could make the bleeding a lot worse. Apply pressure around it.

The person looks pale, feels cold and is dizzy. What does this mean?

This means there isn’t enough blood flowing through the body. This physical response to an injury is called shock, and it can be life-threatening.

If you suspect someone is going into shock:

  • continue to apply pressure to the wound to stop the blood coming out
  • call 999 if you haven’t already done so
  • lie them down and lift their feet higher than the rest of their body. This keeps their legs higher than their heart, which helps increase blood flow to their brain and heart
  • reassure them and wrap them in coats or a blanket to keep them warm.

Is there anything else I can do?

The best thing you can do is keep applying pressure to the wound to help stop or slow the blood flow and wait for an ambulance to arrive.