CPR for Infants: The Lifesaving Skills Every Parent Should Know

Introduction

Infants are the most vulnerable members of our society. That makes it even more important to learn CPR for infants and provide them with every possible chance at survival. Despite what some might think, infant CPR is no different than adult CPR: You just need to be faster. If you can get a pulse within 5 minutes, there's a good chance that your baby will be okay. Let's take a look at how you can use this lifesaving skill today!

When an infant experiences breathing difficulties

When an infant experiences breathing difficulties, parents should know how to perform chest compressions and breaths. This can be lifesaving. CPR is a lifesaving skill that everyone should know. If you ever find yourself in the position of having to help someone who is unconscious or not breathing normally, you will want to know how to perform CPR on them until help arrives. Every parent should learn this skill because it could save their child's life someday!

Compression-only CPR (CO-CPR) is ideal for infants because it does not require mouth-to-mouth contact with an infant's face as with traditional adult CPR techniques; instead, CO-CPR requires only chest compressions without any additional breaths being given through the nose or mouth during each cycle of compression/release cycles until emergency medical services arrive at the scene (or until they're able).

We recommend that everyone learn CPR at some point in their lives

CPR can be lifesaving in the case of a sudden cardiac arrest, especially for children. Infants are at greater risk of sudden cardiac arrest than adults because their hearts are smaller and weaker, and they tend to have fewer underlying medical conditions that might predispose them to arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats). It's also easier for younger people--and especially for parents of young children--to learn CPR than it is for older people who may have been out of practice since childhood.

Although there are many good reasons why everyone should learn CPR at some point in their lives, if you take care of an elderly person or spend time with small children, make sure they know how to do basic chest compressions on adults as well as infants and children.

If the child is breathing abnormally, place them on their side in the recovery position and cover them with a blanket until help arrives. If you see no signs of life after 30 seconds of chest compressions, proceed with CPR.

Be prepared! 

Step 1: Chest compressions

If you're alone with an infant and need to do CPR, start by checking for responsiveness. If the baby isn't responsive, begin chest compressions. Its recommended that you do 30 compressions at a rate of 100 per minute (about 2 inches deep). Ideally, two people should be doing this together--one person does chest compressions while the other performs breaths every 6 seconds. However, if you're alone with your infant or child and can't find another person who knows how to help them, it's okay to take breaks during CPR so that both of you can rest before continuing with more steps later on.

Step 2: Breath

After 30 compressions have been completed on an unresponsive infant or child who has no pulse but is breathing normally (meaning they're not making any stridor noises), give one breath into their mouth at a rate of one every 6 seconds until he/she starts coughing up fluid from his/her nose/mouth or regains consciousness after several minutes pass without any improvement in the condition

Call 911 and check for an AED if one is nearby. Then follow these steps:

  • Call 911 first.
  • If you don't know CPR, learn it now.
  • If there is an AED nearby and someone who knows how to use it, get them on the phone or go find them (if possible) so they can start using it immediately! If the person who knows how to use an AED isn't at home or available, do chest compressions until help arrives; if there's no one else around and all else fails...you'll have no choice but to begin CPR anyway!
  • Get help if possible--but if someone else is present (and uninjured), send him/her off as fast as possible so he/she can call 9-1-1 while leaving you free hands for performing chest compressions throughout this whole process!

Lay the infant on its back on a flat surface.

Lay the infant on its back on a flat surface. Do not lay them on their stomach or side, as this can make it harder to perform compressions properly. If you're in an emergency situation where there is no place to lay down, such as in an ambulance or at home, use whatever is available--a blanket, towel, or jacket--and place it underneath the baby's head and shoulders while performing CPR.

Press your fingers into the soft spot on top of their head (called "fontanelle"). If there is no response after 30 seconds (no breathing), start compressions by pressing down about 2 inches straight across from left to right with two fingers above each nipple line until you feel bone; then release for 1 second before repeating this motion 15 times per minute until help arrives).

Check for signs of life by pressing your fingers into the soft spot on the baby's head (fontanel)

If you see no signs of life after 30 seconds, proceed with chest compressions on an infant younger than 12 months old (after taking off clothing if necessary). If the child is breathing normally, place them on their side in the recovery position and cover them with a blanket until help arrives.

Conclusion

If an infant is having breathing difficulties, parents should know how to perform chest compressions and breaths. This can be lifesaving. Everyone should learn CPR at some point in their lives but especially important for parents of young children who may find themselves in a situation where they need to perform CPR.

PET CPR + FIRST AID CERTIFICATION
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