We all hope that never in our lives are you faced with the opportunity to have to give someone CPR. But fate is funny sometimes and throws these kinds of instances in our path unexpectedly. So, it’s so important for you to know how to properly give CPR.
CPR (or cardiopulmonary resuscitation), according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary is a procedure designed to restore normal breathing after cardiac arrest that includes the clearance of air passages to the lings, mouth-to-mouth method of artificial respiration, and heart massage by the exertion of pressure on the chest.
A little scary sounding, right?
Just remember. You’re saving someone’s life.
We ALWAYS recommend getting CPR certified. You never know when you may need it. You can register with the American Red Cross with not only CPR, but also First Aid and AED’s here. Or you can also contact your city office and ask them of somewhere around you that offers classes.
For example, here in Murray, you can become CPR certified with a class taught by the Murray fire department for $20. Every second Tuesday of the month at 5:00 PM is when the class is held at 40 East 4800 South.
Generally, CPR certifications last for 2 years, then you must take a renewal course to become recertified. Look into your local programs for more information.
So with the help of the American Red Cross, we’re going to provide you with the steps to not only preforming CPR on an adult, but also for children, infants and pets.
Before Giving Adult CPR
- Check the scene and the person. Make sure the scene is safe, then tap the person on the shoulder and SHOUT “Are you OK?” to ensure that the person needs help.
- Call 911 for assistance. If it’s evident that the person needs help, call (or direct a specific bystander to call) 911, then send someone to get an AED. (If an AED is unavailable, or there is no bystander to access it, stay with the victim, call 911 and begin administering assistance.)
- Open the airway. With the person lying on his or her back, tilt the head back to lift the chin.
- Check for breathing. Listen carefully, for no more than 10 seconds, for sounds of breathing. (Occasional gasping sounds do not equate to breathing.) If there is no breathing begin CPR.
C – A – B
Remember the acronym C-A-B, that stands for Compressions, Airway, and Breathing. This will help you to remember that order of steps.
Red Cross Adult CPR Steps
- Push hard, push fast. Place your hands, one on top of the other, in the middle of the best. Use your body weight to help you administer compressions that are at least 2 inches deep and delivered at a rate of at least 100 compressions per minutes.
- Deliver rescue breaths. With the person’s head tilted back slightly and the chin lifted, pinch the nose shut and place your mouth over the person’s mouth to make a complete seal. Blow into the person’s mouth to make the best rise. Deliver two rescue breaths, the continue compressions.
Note: If the chest does not rise with the initial rescue breath, re-tilt the head before delivering the second breath. If the chest doesn’t rise with the second breath, the person may be choking. After each subsequent set of 100 chest compressions, and before attempting breaths, look for an object and, if seen, remove it.
If you don’t want to do mouth-to-mouth with the person, there are CPR masks the provide a barrier between yourself and the person with performing rescue breaths. You can google ‘CPR masks’ and search for one, or you can also purchase one from the American Red Cross.
3. Continue CPR steps, Keep performing cycles of chest compressions and breathing until the person exhibits signs of life, such as breathing, an AED becomes available, or EMS or a training medical responder arrives on scene.
Note: End the cycles if the scene becomes unsafe or you cannot continue performing CPR due to exhaustion.
The American Red Cross also has videos available for you.
Before Beginning Child and Infant CPR
- Check the scene and the child. Make sure the scene is safe, then tap the child on the should and SHOUT “Are you OK?” to ensure that he or she needs help.
For infants, flick the bottom of the foot to elicit a response.
2. Call 911. If child does not respond, direct a specific bystander to call 911, then administer approximately 2 minutes of care.
-If you are alone with the child or infant, administer 2 minutes of care, then call 911.
-If the child or infant does respond, call 911 to report any life-threatening conditions and obtain consent to give care. Check the child from head to toe and ask questions to find out what happened.
3. Open the airway. With the child lying on his or her back, tilt the head back slightly and lift the chin.
4. Check for breathing. Listen carefully, for no more than 10 seconds, for sounds of breathing. (Occasional gasps aren’t breathing.)
Infants typically have periodic breathing, so changes in breathing pattern are normal.
5. Deliver 2 rescue breaths if the child or infant isn’t breathing. With the head tilted back slightly and the chin lifted, pinch the child’s nose shut, make a complete seal by placing your mouth over the child’s mouth and breathe into the child’s moth twice.
For infants, use your mouth to make a complete seal over the infant’s mouth and nose, then blow in for one second to make the chest clearly rise. Now, deliver two rescue breaths.
6. Begin CPR. If the child or infant is unresponsive to the rescue breaths, begin CPR.
Red Cross Child and Infant CPR Steps
- Kneel beside the child or infant.
- Push hard, push fast.
–For children, place the heel of one hand on the center of the chest, then place the heel of the other hand on top of the first had, and lace your fingers together. Deliver 30 quick compressions that are each about 2 inches deep.
–For infants, use 2 fingers to deliver 30 quick compressions that are each about 1.5 inches deep.
3. Give 2 rescue breaths (see instructions above.)
4. Keep going. Continue these child or infant CPR steps until you see obvious signs of life, like breathing, or until AED is ready to use, another trained responder or EMS professional is available to take over, you’re too exhausted to continue, or the scene becomes unsafe.
Pet (Dog or Cat) CPR
- According to the American Society for the Prevention and Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), if you pet needs CPR you should:
Check to see if it’s breathing. If not, place your dog or cat on its side and begin CPR.
2. Administer rescue breaths. Gently extend your pet’s neck, then holding its jaws closed, form a seal by placing your mouth over your pet’s nose. Blow into its nostrils every 3 seconds. Make sure that no air escapes between your mouth and his nose.
3. Pump hard, pump fast. If you don’t feel a heartbeat, deliver 3 quick chest compressions for every breath administered.
4. Continue administering pet CPR until your dog or cat begins breathing again on its own.
As a general precaution, be sure to locate a 24-hour veterinary service in your area. This way, if something happens and your dog or cat needs urgent care, you’ll know where to go for help and can get it there quickly.
If you see someone collapse, the newest CPR recommended response is the Hands-Only method.
Before Giving Hands-Only CPR
- Check the scene and the person. Check to make sure the scene is safe, tap the person on the should to see if they’re OK, and look for signs of rhythmic, normal breathing.
- Call 911 for assistance. If there’s no response from the victim when asked if he or she is OK, call 911, or direct a specific bystander to call for help.
- Begin compressions. If the person is unresponsive, perform hands-only CPR.
How to perform Hands-Only CPR
- Kneel beside the person who needs help.
- Place the heel of one hand on the center of the chest.
- Place the heel of the other hand on top of the first hand, then lace your finger together.
- Position your body so that your shoulders are directly over your hands, and keep your arms straight.
- Push hard, push fast. Use your body weight to help you administer compressions that are at least 2 inches deep and delivered at a rate of at least 100 compressions per minute. (Just be sure to let the chest rise completely between compressions.)
- Keep pushing. Continue hands-only CPR until you see obvious signs of life, like breathing, another trained responder or EMS professional can take over, you’re too exhausted to continue, as AED becomes available, or the scene becomes unsafe.
Once again, we recommend that you are professionally certified through your city or through the American Red Cross. These classes provide dummies that you can practice on and more in-depth information for you.
Being CPR certified may save someone’s life. Or it could save yours one day. So why not?!
**This blog post is purely informational. Speak with your local city office or the American Red Cross to become CPR certified today.