First Aid

For those who don't know, we had quite a scare this week. My 11 week old nephew just stopped breathing, for no apparent reason.

He was however, fortunate for a number of reasons:
  1. We were walking and my sister had him in a sling, so she noticed quickly. Had he been in bed asleep it would have been a different story.
  2. I had worked as a lifeguard many years ago, and was able to start CPR procedure quickly.
  3. We were on a US military base at the time, and we had professionals to take over in under 20 seconds and a military ambulance with us in under a minute.
Jonathon is fine and now at home with his family again, but it was a scary few hours for everyone, particularly the children, who were convinced I was trying to hurt baby Jon. 

It's got me thinking that I really need to brush up on my first aid skills, and I'd urge you all to do the same. These skills are not difficult, we teach them to 16 year olds when we give them a minimum wage job watching a pool. You can learn them easily, and you might save a life - most likely of someone you know. 

Nothing beats signing up for a training course, but even if you can't afford to do that, knowing something is better than nothing. Even CPR done incorrectly can save a life and hospitals can usually reverse any damage you do. Broken ribs heal, and vomiting/pneumonia from incorrect breaths can be monitored, and bruising is virtually inevitable. Doing nothing will always lead to death. 

Vinnie Jones has done a video for the British Heart Foundation which shows you the basics of 'Hands only' CPR. This is useful for a victim who is suffering a heart attack, but not necessarily not breathing.

You can read up to date information on CPR with rescue breaths on the NHS website here.
They also have information on how to put someone in the recovery position and how to deal with some common first aid emergencies.

First aid for babies is a video produced by the NHS that I would encourage any parent to watch through.


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