How To Perform Child CPR
Accidents happen. Learn how to perform CPR on a child, and you could save a young life. Performing CPR pumps oxygen-rich blood into the heart and brain. It can prevent brain damage and may save a child's life. When you get to a scene, and you find that you have an emergency situaton, follow the three steps taught in the Red Cross: Check, Call, Care.
Step 1: Check
First, you should check the scene, and then later on you'll check the victim.
When you check the scene you want to make sure that it's safe for you. You want to make sure you do not become another victim. So, check for safety, then check for the number of victims. How many victims do you have? Clues as to what could have happened. Look around for other bystanders who can help you. These bystanders can help you by calling 911, stopping traffic, and other things of that nature.
Now, check the victim. Find out if they are unconscious. The best way to find out if the victim is conscious is to talk to them. Tap and shout and see if they respond to you.
Step 2: Call
If they are unconscious or under any other life threatening conditions, you should automatically call 911. Preferably, send a bystander to call 911.
Step 3: Care
Care involves the ABCs taught in Red Cross CPR classes. A is for airway, B is for breathing and C is for circulation.
Step 4: A for Airway
To open the airway, tilt the head back, lift the chin and look, listen, and feel for up to ten seconds. This way you can tell if a person is breathing.
Step 5: B for Breathing
If there is no breathing, go to the "B" step, which involves two rescue breaths. Tilt the head back, pinch the nose, lift the chin and give two breaths. Those breaths are about 1 second long.
If the breaths go in, that tells you there is no blockage. Look over the body and see if there's any bleeding. Then, begin CPR.
If the breaths did not go in, the victim is choking and the airway is obstructed. Follow the steps for Unconscious Choking.
Step 6: Check Pulse
Pulse check is no longer done for adults. However, one should check the pulse of children and infants. For children, check the pulse on the side of the neck. For infants, check the pulse on the inside of the arm, between the elbow and the shoulder.
Step 7: C For Circulation
Check the pulse and breathing, and act accordingly. If there is a pulse and breathing, place them on their side in the recovery position.
Step 8: Rescue Breathing
If there is a pulse but no breathing, breathe for the victim. They do not require compressions - only breaths. So do what is called "rescue breathing".
Give one breath every 3 seconds, and give 40 breaths in about 2 minutes. At the end of two minutes, stop to re-check the pulse and breathing again, and decide how to proceed.
Step 9: CPR
If the victim had no pulse / no breathing, perform CPR.
CPR is a combination of compressions and breaths and it serves to let oxygenated blood throughout the entire body. It keeps the brain and other vital organs alive, until advanced emergency personnel can take over.
When we do CPR, we're going to do 30 compressions and 2 breaths and we're going to do them five times every 2 minutes.
For CPR for a child, you can use two hands, but if you're dealing with a very small child, you probably want to do a one-handed technique. The one-handed technique involves putting one hand on the center of the chest and the other on the forehead. Keep that airway open and put your shoulders directly over the victim's chest. Compress down one to one and a half inches as you do your compressions.
Step 10: Stopping CPR
Once you begin CPR, do not stop to recheck. Continue without stopping, until you see signs of life, another trained person takes over, a defibrillator is ready to be used, the scene becomes unsafe, or you are too exhausted to continue.
Step 11: Recovery
If the victim shows signs of life, place them in the recovery position with the stomach to the ground and the head to the side, resting on their arm.