Administering CPR and AED to Children
Children, although young and healthy, are still susceptible to a number of cardiovascular problems. There are children born with defects due to the improper development of parts of their cardiovascular system, commonly called as congenital heart defects. There are also those that develop heart diseases as they grow up. Some of the most common heart diseases that children are susceptible to developing are mostly acquired due to other complications. Some of these include Kawasaki disease, rheumatic heart diseases, and heart diseases caused by childhood obesity.
Congenital defects are different from heart diseases as congenital defects do not develop due to external factors, unlike the diseases. The Kawasaki diseases is caused by an unknown infectious agent and is acquired by young children. The rheumatic heart disease is caused by rheumatic fever and affects the heart of children that are not treated quickly. All these diseases can cause sudden cardiac arrest.
With the increasing number of children being affected by heart diseases, it is time that people be informed of techniques and procedures in applying cardiopulmonary resuscitation and using an automatic external defibrillator for children. It is important to note that there are major differences between administering CPR and AED to children, infants, and adults. These differences can spell the effectiveness and possible injury that can be acquired by children and infants.
For starters, administering CPR for children does not require the same force needed for adult CPR. The anatomy of children is significantly different from that of an adult, so the necessary compression of 2 inches is not recommended. Doing so may result in more damage that could complicate problems. As someone who is administering CPR, you can decrease the force you are applying by using only a single hand to proceed with the compressions. Other than the force, you must be careful in positioning the body of children or infants before compressions, as it is important that their airways are clear.
Automatic external defibrillators produce a charge that is powerful enough to shock a grown man’s heart back into beating. This means that this amount of energy may be too much for the body of a child, much more to an infant. This means that you must be able to properly use an AED that can make it useful for a child without charging up the body of the victim with too much electricity. This can be done by reading the quick rescue tips written in some AEDs, or if it has voice function, listening to the instructions for use on children and infants.
To get more information regarding the use of CPR and AED for children and infants, as well as to receive proper instruction, it is best to find a training center near you, and informing the trainer or those in charge of the training of your goal of learning CPR and AED to perform on children and infants. This way, you can get hands-on experience on performing CPR, even if the victims are only mannequins to practice on. You can also consult with experts regarding the do’s and don’ts of CPR and AED administration on children and infants.