Monday, 1 October 2012

Would you look for it - and what if you found it?

I don't have one but I know several people who do. I'm talking about a piece of safety jewellery (bracelet or necklace) which details an individual's problem and/or gives a phone number which gets to a family member or friend.

The concept is excellent, particularly for people who don't come round from their seizures very quickly. They need somebody or, at the very least, 'something' to be doing the talking for them. But.....many members of the public aren't aware of this safety jewellery so don't look for it. And, actually, wouldn't know what to do if they found it. So people can end up with a worrying situation on their hands while answers may lie just inches away!

But paramedics would know better - wouldn't they??? I'm sure some do but, once again, many don't! It's partly because of this lack of awareness that some people with epilepsy prefer to wear a bracelet in the hope that paramedics will see the jewellery when they take a pulse reading. Yet some have reported that although their pulse was taken, paramedics still failed to see the bracelet.

The ultimate overlooking story I heard came from a woman who chooses to wear a safety necklace. Paramedics attended to her after a seizure, failed to spot the necklace and she, in drowsy post-seizure state, could only manage to point to it. "That's lovely" was their reply as they continued to ignore it!

Basic Medical Alert bracelet (details engraved on reverse of plate)
Of course there are many positive stories where safety jewellery has reunited a poorly person with a loved one or informed medics of the specifics of somebody's condition.Everyone I've asked, who wears the jewellery, suggests that it's been useful in about half of all 'situations'. They feel better with it than without it and that counts for loads.

Reasons for not wearing safety jewellery seem to fall into two categories: it's not needed (I, for example, am 'back in the room' too quickly to need help.); it's not wanted - people don't want to walk around wearing a 'badge of disability'.

The latter issue is being addressed by major players in the market including Medic Alert. Very fashionable designs such as Sweetie bracelets, sports bands, Shamballa and beaded bracelets are now available to appeal to anyone wanting to marry safety with style. Occurs to me, though, that if the traditional basic silver jewellery isn't always spotted, a very good marketing campaign is needed if the trendy stuff has a hope of making an impact.
Shamballa - Medic Alert
Sweetie bracelet - Medic Alert
For the record, I'm very in favour of safety jewellery. I simply think more people should know more about it. I've shown a few styles, from a couple of companies. These are designed for women - there are many more for men too. 

SOS Talisman contains an information strip




                                                  

Are we going to your place? No, it wasn't a proposition!

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