Children's CPR

Children’s cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a life-saving procedure performed on infants and children experiencing cardiac arrest or severe respiratory distress. It involves a series of steps aimed at restoring blood circulation and oxygenation to vital organs until professional medical help arrives.

The first step in paediatric CPR is to assess the child’s responsiveness. Tap or gently shake the child and shout their name to see if they respond. If there is no response, immediately call for emergency medical assistance or ask someone nearby to do so while you begin CPR.

Next, check the child’s breathing by looking for chest rise and fall or listening for breath sounds. If the child is not breathing or is breathing abnormally, begin chest compressions.

For infants under one year of age, place two fingers in the centre of the chest, just below the nipple line, and press down with firm, rapid compressions. Compress the chest to about one-third of its depth, at a rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute.

For children aged one year and older, use the heel of one hand to compress the chest at the lower half of the sternum, between the nipples. Compress the chest to about one-third of its depth, at the same rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute.

After 30 compressions, provide rescue breaths. Tilt the child’s head back slightly, lift the chin, and cover the child’s mouth and nose with your mouth. Give two breaths, each lasting about one second, and watch for chest rise. If the chest does not rise, reposition the child’s head and try again.

Continue cycles of 30 compressions followed by two breaths until the child starts breathing, shows signs of circulation, or until emergency medical help arrives.

It’s important to remember that paediatric CPR requires specific techniques and considerations due to the smaller size and unique physiology of infants and children. Proper training in children’s CPR is essential for anyone who cares for children to ensure they can respond effectively in emergency situations.

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