First Aid Training for Parents and Carers -

Why do parents and adults handling kids should get first aid and CPR skill training and knowledge?

Being a parent or babysitter is a completely different ball game. Managing children and infants is not a piece of cake (ask any parent or adult involved in handling kids). Parents or babysitters, whose duty is to take care of children, can’t even think of their toddlers or infants sustaining serious injuries, choking or getting hurt. Child safety experts say that most of these incidents involving kids are preventable. However, facts show a startling figure – 9000 kids (below the age of 14 years) in US die every year due to ignorance of adults or their lack of knowledge in administering basic emergency CPR or first aid. CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation is an integral part of First Aid methods and every parent or professional taking care of kids should be trained and have knowledge in these techniques and methods.

Why should a parent learn the basics of CPR and first aid?

Having said all the above, every parent should under CPR and first aid training programs. With prior knowledge and training, you can save your child’s life. CPR is important in emergencies inclusive of near-drowning, accidents, poisoning, suffocation, smoke inhalation, SIDS or sudden infant death syndrome and electrocution injuries. We all know, toddlers are prone to putting things in their mouth, bumping their heads, falling and meeting with such accidents. If you don’t administer first aid immediately, the situation can worsen and even become fatal for your kid.

Getting trained will provide you with basic comprehension of the entire procedure and concept of CPR. At the end of the day, CPR performance can only become successful, if you follow the right techniques and methods. Furthermore, CPR techniques are different for infants and children than adults.

What and how to do?

You should perform CPR, when the child is not circulating blood or breathing adequately. First and foremost, you need to ensure that is completely safe to approach your kid. After you’ve determined this aspect, you need to find out whether the child is responding or not. Look for things like, sounds from the kid’s mouth, eye opening, chest movement, leg or arm movement or similar signs. In case of infants, you can rub their chest for determining responsiveness level.

Learning child and infant CPR

Learning how to perform child and infant CPR is best done by attending a proper class, taught and administered by a certified CPR instructor. American Heart Association, American Red Cross, community centers, hospitals and similar places offer classes in CPR and first aid.

In these classes, instructors demonstrate a scene of accident with the use of child-size dummies. Through this method, you can to learn how to perform basic CPR techniques, how to tilt the head back and strike a kid back, if he/she is choking etc.

In a CPR certification class or course, you will learn the different procedures of handling medical emergencies related to children and infants. For example, what to do when a child is choking or not breathing, moving, in a near-drowning situation etc.

The courses also cover childproofing and accident prevention measures. These particular techniques and methods are different for children and infants. Therefore, it is necessary to get acquainted and trained in both the techniques.

Parents can take up pediatric CPR/AED/first aid course. Through such a course they get to learn different preventive methods, ways to recognize, as well as, respond to breathing and cardiac emergencies, via the use of AED or automated external defibrillator, care for injuries and illnesses, treat different burns and wounds in children and infants.

CPR for infants – kids 1 year of age and below

If you have an infant or are taking care of one and suddenly, are faced with an emergency concerning the child –

Perform CPR for 2 minutes prior to dialing 911

Here’s what you should do:

  1. First shout and then tap gently on the shoulder of the child, for determining responsiveness. If the kid does not respond or isn’t breathing in a normal manner, position him/her on his/her back and start performing CPR.
  2. Perform 30 compressions gently on the chest, completing 100 compressions in a minute. Make sure to use 2 or 3 fingers only to give chest compressions but on the center of the child’s chest and right below her/his nipple line. Press about 1 ½ inches depth that of the chest.
  3. In the third step, open airway by first tilting the head and lifting the chin. But make sure not to tilt the head too much at the back.
  4. In the final step, you have to give 2 rescue breaths in a gentle manner, but only in case the kid is not breathing in a normal manner or at all. First cover his/her mouth and pinch nose and place your mouth and give 2 breaths gently. Each breath must last for 1 second or until you witness any response – rising of the child’s chest.

Alternative options for learning and getting trained in CPR and first aid

It is hard enough to handle kids and fulfill the responsibilities of a parent that you’ll have to take out time and go to a class. Time is the essence, in every parent’s life. Taking care of children, is more than 24 hours per day schedule.

Good news is that you don’t have to drive to a classroom or attend classes at a pre-determined schedule in order to get trained and certified in CPR. Thanks to the internet, you can get trained and certified online only. The American Red Cross offers online CPR courses, for individuals like, parents, who aren’t able to attend regular classes.

The online classes are same as traditional classrooms. You get to view instructions provided by certified CPR instructors via videos and telecommunication, manuals and online materials. Another best thing about these online classes is that you can give written exams online only and schedule an evaluation date with your instructor, who will attend your desired venue and evaluate your skills that you’ve got through the course before getting the certification.


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