How to Do Infant CPR: A Step-By-Step Guide

You can lower your stress around the idea of your child choking by learning infant CPR. Follow these steps to be prepared.

Each year, more than 12,000 kids are taken to the emergency room due to choking on food.

Besides cutting up their food in small bites, there aren't many things you can do to ensure that kids don't choke. 

Teaching your child about choking may help. But the time will come and they will likely choke— will you be prepared? 

Continue reading to discover how to do infant CPR so that you are prepared and can help keep your child safe! 

1. Evaluate the Situation

The first thing that you need to do for infant CPR is to evaluate the situation.

You should verify that the area is safe for you to go in. If it is you will need to ensure that the child is choking. You can tap them on the shoulder or bottom of the foot to elicit a response. 

CPR can be used in a variety of situations, not just for when they choke. Accidents, inhaling smoke, suffocation, and near-drowning are other situations that require CPR. 

If you notice that the child is not breathing or having a difficult time, start CPR. Laying the infant on their back is the position to begin CPR. 

2. Clear Their Airway and Listen

To help the child clear their airway you need to lay them on their back and tilt their head back.

The chin should be slightly lifted, pushing it too far up can increase blockage. In this position, you can then listen and look for signs of breathing. Gasps of air should not be considered as breathing during this step.

Sometimes the thing that is blocking their airway is the child's tongue. If they lose consciousness, it is likely that this is the cause. 

If the child isn't breathing normally for more than 10 seconds you will have to help give them air. 

3. Use Rescue Breaths

When clearing the airway doesn't solve the block, you must then give the child 2 rescue breaths. 

To properly give rescue breaths you must cover the child's mouth and nose, using your mouth. Give 2 light breaths into them. They should last no more than 1 second. 

Don't quit if your breaths aren't helping them, continue with CPR. It is important to remain focused and force air into their bodies. If the rescue breaths help, blood will begin flowing back to the heart, brain, and other vital organs. 

It may take a moment for them to resume normal breathing once they start. 

4. Push Down 

If the child still isn't able to breathe or respond, you must compress on their chest. 

Try pushing down gently and hard to help clear the airway. You should be pressing down with 2 or 3 fingers in the center of the chest. The rates of compression should be 100-120 beats per minute. 

To ensure that you are pressing on the correct spot, it should be in the center below the nipples. You must press on their chest 1-1.5 inches into work. If you aren't sure if you are doing it right, check to make sure that their chest is rising during each breath you give them.  

5. Get Help and Continue CPR

Helping the child takes priority. After 2 minutes of administering CPR, you should call an ambulance and get help. 

When you call 911 they will ask for your location, association with the child, and their condition. If you know what the child choked on, you can share that information. Many times when you call 911, they will help walk you through the steps until help arrives. 

Until a trained responder or EMS workers are on seen, continue giving CPR. Keep checking for signs of breathing and life. Make sure that you are getting enough air for yourself.

Giving CPR can be tiresome and leave you breathless, especially when you are scared. If you have the option, try letting someone else step in to continue CPR to give you a small break. 

Tips in Times of Need

There is nothing scarier than seeing a child struggle to breathe from choking. 

In these times of need, it can be difficult to take control of the situation and help the child with infant CPR. It is important to remain calm throughout the entire process and focus on each step. 

If no one is around you and the child to call 911, administer CPR for 2 minutes before grabbing the phone. Giving CPR as fast as possible can help prevent the choking from getting worse. It is also more successful when you get to the child quickly. 

When, and if, cardiac arrest occurs, you can use an AED on infants to help them breathe again.

Those that question the steps to CPR should remember the word "CAB." CAB stands for compressions, airway, and breathing. When giving CPR you should push on their chest (compressions), clear their airway, and gently breath into their mouth. 

Be Prepared With This Infant CPR Guide 

Knowing how to do infant CPR is important, especially if you have a child. 

Following these steps can help you successfully clear your child's airways so that they can breathe again. Even if you don't have any children, it is still good to know what to do when emergencies arise. 

After evaluating the situation and starting CPR you can contact 911 for help. Until that help arrives you should be pressing down on the child's chest until you see signs of life and breathing.

Don't forget to remain calm in these situations. It can be a terrifying thing to see a child not breathing. Getting to them as fast as you can and providing assistance offers them the best chance. 

Be sure to check out our blog for more articles about raising your kids in a healthy and safe environment!