| How Do I Do Hands-Only CPR?
CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation is a life-saving technique which is primarily used on people who suffer sudden cardiac arrest as a result of a heart attack or other heart condition like congestive heart failure (see when is CPR necessary?). Traditionally the American Heart Association recommended using rescue breaths and chest compression to help SCA victims. According to their new guidelines however, chest compressions alone is now considered adequate (unless you have qualified in CPR, qualified people can continue with the traditional method). It is hoped that the new easier hands only method will make bystanders more inclined to jump in and perform CPR. Hands only CPR is easier to do and removes the barrier some people have about mouth to mouth breathing.
How To Perform Hand Only CPR
This method can be used on anyone over the age of 8 years of age.
1. Start by dialing 911 for emergency services.
2. Kneel at the person's side at shoulder level and locate the soft area at the center of the chest just below the ribcage.
3. Place the heel of one hand on the spot and place the other hand on top. Interlock your fingers to secure it.
4. Push hard and fast, about 100 pulses a minute.
5. Continue pulsing until emergency help or someone with an automated external defibrillator (AED, image) arrives.
6. Take a few minutes to watch this how to do CPR video. The time taken could save the life of someone you love.
What If I Get Tired?
Hands only CPR can be hard work. If someone else is nearby, ask them to take over after you have performed 200 or 300 compressions. If you are alone with the victim, do your best to keep going until medical care arrives.; you are likely to be their only hope of survival. Statistically, the victim is probably going to be a loved one - 4 out of 5 cardiac arrests happen in the home. If you come from an African-American family it particularly important to know CPR - your loved ones are almost twice as likely to experience SCA as white people and their survival rate is twice as poor.
Learn To Spot The Symptoms
All of the following heart conditions can lead to cardiac arrest, so it is worth recognizing the symptoms:
Silent Heart Attacks
Heart Attack Symptoms
Signs of Heart Arrhythmias
Symptoms of Heart Failure
• Need more information? See: Heart Attacks in Women / Silent Heart Attacks
• Got another question? See: Womens Health Questions
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