Recently, NBC's Today Show aired a segment about two Georgia boys, Rocky Hurt, 9, and Ethan Wilson, 10, who came to the aid of an unresponsive infant's frantic mother, successfully instructing her how to perform adequate CPR on the baby.
While the boys' quick thinking is to be commended, it begs the question: Would you know how to perform CPR if you needed to? Or do you know the difference between CPR for adults, children and infants?
Here are a few key differences and points to remember when performing CPR:
Adults - You want to compress the chest at the nipple line, pushing down between 1 ½ and 2-inches with locked arms and shoulders positioned over your hands. Be sure to allow the chest to rise completely again before continuing compressions. Performing breaths for bystander CPR is not required, just make sure you are delivering a rate of 100 compressions per minute.
Children (1-8 years) - As in adult CPR, compressions will be along the nipple line where you want to compress 1-inch to 1 ½-inches (or ? the depth of their chest). While you may use two hands to perform CPR on larger children (or if you are smaller statured), for smaller children you may only want to use one hand.
Unlike adult CPR though, performing breaths for children and infants is still recommended. To deliver breaths, open the airway (tilt head back, chin up) and give two breaths. Make sure to check that the child’s chest rises when you deliver the breaths.
Continue to perform rounds of 30 compressions followed by two breaths until EMS arrives.
Infants (1 year old and younger) - Check the baby for signs of responsiveness and breathing, if none then begin CPR.
Position your hand just below the nipple line (about a ½-inch) and using two fingers placed in the center of the chest compress between ½-inch and 1-inch. Compress the chest 30 times and then open the child’s airway and give two breaths.
Be careful not to overextend the airway (this will collapse it), and make sure to check for chest rise and fall when administering breathing.