On very second Saturday of September each year, World First Aid Day is observed across the world. An annual campaign to promote the significance of first aid training in preventing injuries, the day also emphasizes on how being little careful and acquainted with first aid basics can go a long way to save many lives. Millions of people are injured or die each year because of inadequate medical care. First aid effectively reduces these fatalities and injuries during such catastrophes. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) firmly believes that first aid should be available to everybody, more so to the vulnerable, who may lose their lives due to inadequate resources. On this day, more than 100 Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies hold activities to make people aware of the need for first aid throughout the world. First aid training gives the required information and abilities needed to respond successfully and with confidence whenever it is necessary. With this year’s theme ‘Lifelong First aid learning for 2022,’ the major objective of getting trained on first aid basics is to save lives.
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)- The Life Saving Technique
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is an emergency procedure consisting of chest compressions often combined with artificial ventilation. We all know the importance of breathing. Even a slight delay in lack of oxygen to the body can end a life. Calling medical help is the primary step, but when the person is unconscious, every single second counts. A lifesaving procedure performed when the heart stops beating, the importance of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation or CPR, has been reinstated several times. When there is no pulse or breathing present in human body and if within seconds CPR is performed, it can double the chances of the casualty’s survival.
How To Administer CPR?
A well-timed accurately done CPR can save a life. Below are the following steps should be done to resuscitate the casualty and help circulate blood and oxygen in the body:
- Follow the ABC of first aid. Open the airways, check breathing and circulation
- To prevent the tongue obstructing the upper airways, use head-tilt/chin-lift technique. Tilt the head backwards in unconscious patients, applying pressure to the forehead and the chin
- Look for any life-threatening bleeding or other conditions using shout-tap-shout
- If the person does not respond and is not breathing or slightly gasping, place the person on their back on a firm, flat surface with neck tilted sideways. This is called recovery position
- Recovery position helps minimize further injury and prevents the tongue fall back and block the airways
- Give 30 chest compressions with hand positioned two hands centered on the chest (below the lower end of sternum.) Your body position should be shoulders directly over hands and elbows locked
- While administering CPR, depth of at least 2 inches and rate of 100 to 120 per minute should be maintained
- Allow chest to return to normal position after each compression
- Give 2 breaths after every chest compression
- Ensure each breath lasts about 1 second and makes the chest rise to allow air to exit before giving the next breath
- If the 1st breath does not cause the chest to rise, re-tilt the head and ensure a proper mouth seal before giving the 2nd breath.
- If the 2nd breath does not make the chest rise, an object may be blocking the airway. Retry head-tilt/chin-lift technique
- Continue giving sets of 30 chest compressions and 2 breaths