25+ Essential CPR Facts All Kids Should Know

Always alert emergency services before doing anything else.
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From knowing facts about cell membranes controlling exactly what gets in and out of trillions of tiny cells to gas-exchanging respiratory systems facts, our bodies do amazing things.

Despite being complex, most people's bodies tick along just fine most of the time. However, things can go wrong and when that happens, for example in sudden cardiac arrest, it's important to know what to do.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), sometimes called heart resuscitation, is an emergency first aid procedure that can save a life. Used after sudden cardiac arrest, CPR artificially pumps oxygenated blood around the body and increases a person's chance of survival. Learn more about this life-saving procedure with our facts about CPR.

First Aid Rules

These facts on CPR are equally good for any kind of first aid.

1. Rule number one of performing any kind of first aid is never to put yourself at risk.

2. CPR saves lives, but performing CPR, and first aid in general, is particularly risky during the pandemic. Before doing anything else, make sure you are being safe and following all of your governmental guidelines.

3. The first thing you must always do in an emergency is call 911 and alert the emergency services. Use the local emergency number if you are outside the US, for example, if you are on vacation. If there are people trained in first aid or medical personnel around, let them take over.

To perform CPR correctly, place one hand on top of the other with the heel of the bottom hand on the center of the chest.

The Procedure For CPR

Knowing how to perform CPR correctly could save a life. Learning CPR in-person is always best, but according to the American Heart Association, even bystander CPR by someone not formally trained can improve a person's chance of survival after cardiac arrest by 200-300%. Keep reading to learn how to do CPR.

4. Make sure the patient is lying on their back on a firm surface. Kneel next to them and put the heel of your hand (the bit just in front of your wrist) in the middle of their chest.

5. Place your other hand on top, and interlace your fingers with only the heel of your hand touching the chest. Make sure your arms are still straight.

6. Lean forward and make a straight line from your shoulders through your hands to the middle of the person's chest. Press down about two inches on the chest then release, keeping your hands in place. Repeat 30 times. The compression rate needs to be about 100 per minute, which is the rhythm of the BeeGees song "Stayin' Alive". The compressions need to be hard and fast.

7. Open the airways: put one hand on the patient's forehead and the other on their chin and tilt the head back gently. The mouth should fall open slightly. Check the airway is not obstructed.

8. Use the hand that was on the forehead to pinch the patient's nostrils closed. Use your other hand to support the chin. Take a big breath and blow it into the lungs. The chest should rise.

9. Wait for the chest to fall. Repeat rescue breath once.

10. Repeat 30 chest compressions followed by two rescue breaths until help arrives or the person starts to breathe again on their own.

Hands-Only CPR Facts

Hands-only CPR information, explaining what it is and when it's used.

11. Hands-only CPR means giving chest compressions without rescue breaths.

12. Also called compression-only CPR, cardiac arrest patients have been shown to benefit more from this type of resuscitation.

13. The American Heart Association recommends compression-only resuscitation in cases of cardiac arrest, such as adults and teens who have suddenly collapsed. Children should be given rescue breaths if the airway is clear.

14. In a CPR emergency, use compression-only CPR if the airway is obstructed and it cannot be safely cleared.

When To Use CPR

Facts about CPR and when you should use it.

15. Before beginning the CPR procedure, call an ambulance or ask someone else to do it while you begin performing CPR. Pick one person to ask specifically if there's a crowd.

16. You should perform the CPR process as part of first aid when someone is not breathing and has no pulse.

17. If someone else who can perform effective CPR is present, swap places every 10 minutes.

18. If the person moves, coughs or gives other signs of life, stop doing CPR.

19. Don't give CPR if the patient has signed an order saying they shouldn't be revived after cardiac arrest.

Immediate CPR improves chances of survival after cardiac arrest by up to 300%.

The Success Rate Of CPR

Heart-stopping statistics about CPR and the CPR success rate.

20. According to the American Heart Association, giving CPR straight away can double or even triple cardiac arrest victims' survival rates. CPR is a real life-saver.

21. More than 300,000 people suffer cardiac arrests in the United States every year. Without CPR, survival rates are lower than 10% for cardiac arrests outside hospital, and below 20% for in-hospital cardiac arrests.

22. When emergency CPR is performed immediately, the survival rates for people suffering out-of-hospital cardiac arrests jump to around 45%.

23. There are about 92,000 lives saved by CPR each year.

24. To save a life, CPR must be started within the first 10 minutes. After cardiac arrest, a person's chance of survival decreases by 10% for every minute without treatment.

Interesting Facts About CPR

These CPR fun facts won't help during a cardiac arrest, but they're definitely interesting.

25. Sudden cardiac arrest is the most common cause of death among adults in the United States.

26. The American Heart Association says less than 20 percent of Americans know how to perform CPR.

27. Because most people are not trained in bystander CPR and first aid, only 32% of people suffering sudden cardiac arrest get help.

28. CPR and first aid training is usually available to people from middle-school age and up.

29. Medical staff use CPR in hospital during emergencies, while waiting for resuscitation teams to arrive.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Essential CPR Facts, then why not take a look at Dental Facts, or Fun Facts And Stats For Kids?

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