For many years, people have helped other people when they fall from an ailment or an accident. The worst part of a fall or an ailment is when a person goes into cardiac arrest. The first thought that comes to mind of a potential rescuer is to find out if the person is doing okay. When that person finds that he or she is not okay, human nature kicks in, and the person who probably have never faced a situation like this turns into a hero. The potential hero may or may not have taken a Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) class. Either way they may have heard about it, and the simplest thing to do is to push hard and fast on the front middle part of the chest.
In today’s world, most people decline to help another person because of the possibility of getting a disease. Sure, there is a possibility of getting a disease, but the odds are that you will not because you are only pushing on the chest. However, some people have an urge to do more, such as mouth to mouth resuscitation. For the most part, people who do mouth to mouth resuscitation are doing it on a friend or close family member. It is unlikely that a bystander will do mouth to mouth on a stranger but what if they want to?
The American Heart Association (AHA) does not require that mouth to mouth be done during CPR by bystanders. When healthcare providers (such as EMT’s Paramedics or Firefighters) arrive, a bag-valve-mask device is used for ventilation in place of mouth to mouth. But what if the bystander or potential hero wants to do mouth to mouth before help arrives?
The potential hero or bystander can perform ventilations for a victim who is in cardiac arrest (heart stopped) or respiratory arrest (breathing stopped, but the heart still beats) by using a pocket mask. The pocket mast is a device that is placed over the nose and mouth of the victim with a device at the top of the mask for blowing air into the lungs. There is a one-way valve so in case of emesis and the device is relatively safe. It does take a little practice to use, but with time, the bystander or potential hero can successfully use the device.
The pocket mask is easily obtainable by going online and simply typing pocket mask. Many options will pop up, and all you have to do is simply choose the best price. Once you purchase the pocket mask, schedule yourself for a CPR class, and the instructor will be happy to demonstrate the proper use of it. Oh, while you learn to use the pocket mask, you will walk away as a CPR provider and have a card indicating the you successfully completed a genuine CPR class.
The pocket mask comes in many sizes so you can use it on infants, adults, and children. However, do not be discouraged if you don’t have a pocket mask and decide to do only chest compressions. Doing chest compressions is enough to keep oxygenated blood flowing to the brain and other organs if chest compressions are done properly. The worst thing to do is nothing. Simply calling 911 is not enough for a victim in cardiac arrest. In addition, the pocket mask is transparent so you will see the mouth when giving ventilations or not.
Those who decide to do mouth to mouth without a pocket mask opens an avenue to the transmission of germs and disease. One disease you can possibly get is tuberculosis. This disease is aggressive when in its later stage. Simply coughing can spread the disease. Another is herpes which can present as a sore on the lips (herpes type I) and is extremely contagious. Of course, there are other diseases, but with a pocket mask, you are protecting yourself. However, the best thing to do, as mentioned is chest compressions. Just because a person may have a disease does not mean that that person is a menace to society. He or she may be an asset to the community, a Doctor, Nurse, Senator or even a Judge.
Don’t be judgmental and condemn someone who you don’t know. Take a step forward and help that victim who may turn out to help you in the future. Get that pocket mask and make it work. It is a human duty to help a fellow human.