CPR for Children

Knowing how and when to administer CPR to your child may save his life.  When performed correctly, CPR restores a child’s breathing and circulation until professional help arrives.

CPR stands for cardiopulmonary resuscitation – a combination of mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and chest compressions.  Although reading about CPR will give a basic understanding, every parent should take a CPR course which is available in most towns and cities.

CPR should only be performed if a child is not breathing and should be administered as quickly as possible once it is determined to be necessary.

The basic parts of CPR are easy to remember as A, B, C

  • Airway
  • Breathing
  • Circulation.

Airway

  • Turn the child flat, face-up on a hard surface
  • Open airway with a head-tilt/chin-lift

Breathing

  • Keeping the airway open, check for breathing
  • Look to see if chest rises, listen for breaths, feel for breaths on your cheek
  • If the child is not breathing, seal the mouth with your mouth
  • Pinch the nose
  • Give 2 breaths, just enough to make the chest rise
  • Watch for chest to rise with breaths
  • If chest rises – go to C (circulation)
  • If chest does not rise – reposition the head and try 2 more breaths
  • Look in the mouth and remove anything that is blocking the airway

Circulation

  • Open chest clothing
  • Put the heel of one hand between the nipples on the breastbone
  • Push hard and fast
  • Push straight down, 30 pushes at a rate of 100 per minute, let chest come up after each push
  • Give 2 breaths after each 30 pushes
  • Do 5 sets of 30 pushes and 2 breaths.  This should take approximately 2 minutes
  • If not already done, call 911
  • Do CPR until child is responding (starting to move) or until professional help takes over

If breathing but not responding:

  • Stop CPR
  • Watch the breathing until professional help arrives
  • If no injuries, roll the child onto one side

Even if breathing and responding, the child should be taken to the nearest Emergency Room by ambulance.

Gun Safety and Children

Nearly half of all households in the United States have one or more guns.  So even if you do not have a gun in your own household, your child is likely to be exposed to a household that does at some point in time.

It is important to talk to your child about gun safety and what to do if he finds one.

In 1999, 3,385 children between the ages of 0-19 were killed with a gun.  Of these deaths: 73 were children less than 5 years old, 416 were 5-14 years old, and 2,896 were 15-19 years old.

Teach your child the following rules regarding gun safety if he comes in contact with a gun:

  • Stop
  • Don’t touch
  • Remove yourself from the area
  • Tell an adult

If you have a gun in your home:

  • Make sure the gun is unloaded
  • Lock the gun in a storage cabinet that is inaccessible to the children
  • Lock the ammunition in a separate place from the gun
  • Store the keys to the gun and ammunition cabinets out of the reach of the children
  • Store all gun-cleaning supplies, many which are poisonous, in a locked cabinet also
  • Never leave the gun unattended while cleaning or handling it

Gun Safety Away From Home

  • Discuss gun safety with other parents if your child spends time in their homes and they own a gun

BB Guns, Pellet Guns, and Toy Guns

  • BB and pellet guns should only be used under adult supervision, as they can seriously hurt and even kill someone
  • Police officers may mistake a toy gun for a real one
  • Teach your child to never point a BB gun, pellet gun, or toy gun at himself or another person
  • Do not put caps from toy guns in your pocket, they can ignite and cause serious burns

Older children are more at risk for injury or death as a result of horseplay with a gun.  Teenagers use them more for suicide and to commit a crime.