Hands Only CPR

March 31, 2014 Cheryl Smith CPR, Hands-Only CPR

stayin alive

Many people feel uncomfortable putting their mouth on a stranger’s mouth.  I can relate to this.  The first time that I ever gave CPR it was to a hitchhiker on the side of the road that I witnessed having a heat stroke.   I did not know him and would not have wanted to put my mouth on his.  Luckily for him, I have an entire trunk full of CPR arsenal but most people don’t.

Hands only CPR was developed so that bystanders could feel comfortable doing something and doing it quickly.   Most people that experience cardiac arrest out of a hospital setting die because they do not receive immediate CPR from someone at the scene.  Hands only CPR is easy and anyone can do it!

Here are the steps:

  • Call 911
  • Push hard and fast at the center of the chest

(Compress the chest to the beat of the disco song “Stayin’ Alive” 100 beats per min)

Hands-Only CPR is recommended for teenagers and adults.  Cardiac Arrest is the leading cause of death in America and immediate CPR can double your chance of survival.

So why does it work?
We already have a fair amount of oxygen in our blood and in our lungs.  When someone isn’t moving they aren’t using much of that oxygen.  This allows a few minutes for our bodies to use up all the stored oxygen until help arrives.  Also, a small amount of oxygen is passively pulled in and pushed out with every compression given by a rescuer.

The Hands-only approach is not recommended for infants and children as they rarely experience cardiac arrest.  If someone has stopped breathing due to drowning, choking or severe asthma they would still need mouth-to-mouth ventilations as well as chest compressions.

Hands-Only-CPR

Sources:
http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletters/Harvard_Heart_Letter/2008/July/hands-only-cpr
http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/CPRAndECC/HandsOnlyCPR/Hands-Only-CPR_UCM_440559_SubHomePage.jsp

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