The terms ‘dressing’ and ‘bandage’ are often used synonymously. In fact, the term ‘dressing’ refers more correctly to the primary layer in contact with the wound. A bandage is a piece of material used either to covering wounds, to keep dressings in place, to applying pressure controlling bleeding, to support a medical device such as a splint, or on its own to provide support to the body. It can also be used to restrict a part of the body.
Dressings are used to cover wounds, prevent contamination and control bleeding. In providing first aid we commonly used self-adhesive dressings or gauze dressings : Adhesive dressings are used mainly for small wounds. They come in many different sizes, including specific types for placement on fingertips. Gauze dressings are thick, cotton pads used to cover larger wounds. They are held in place with tape or by wrapping with a gauze strip (bandage). Dressings must be sterile and absorbent to deter the growth of bacteria, and should be left in place until the wound heals, unless it needs to be regularly cleaned. The three major types of bandages are: roller bandages, tubular bandages and triangular bandages.They are necessary for :covering wounds,applying pressure controlling bleeding, or supporting a strain or sprain. There is a specific bandage made for each of these tasks. Roller bandages are long strips of material.
Basically there are two types of roller bandages :An elastic roller bandage is used to apply support to a strain or sprain and is wrapped around the joint or limb many times. It should be applied firmly, but not tightly enough to reduce circulation. Cotton or linen roller bandages are used to cover gauze dressings. They come in many different widths and are held in place with tape, clips or pins. They can also be used for wound compression if necessary, as they are typically sterile.