Being a Superhero: Saving a Baby’s Life

Nothing is scarier, more daunting, and more intimidating than having to step in and save a baby’s life. Being a superhero for your own family or someone else’s is an immense responsibility - but it is one you are capable of handling. Seeing a baby choke or struggle to breathe is an unforgettable sight, one that elicits panic and turmoil. Stay calm and collected to properly handle the situation. A calm mindset, proper preparedness, and CPR training will arm you with the knowledge and power to be a superhero.

Most arrests in babies occur from lack of oxygen due to choking on food or even a toy. If you are unaware as to why a baby is not breathing, immediately perform CPR. Every second counts, and transforming into a superhero is vital in this moment.

Here are essential steps to applying your cape and saving a baby’s life:

Check for Response:

  • Flick the baby’s feet in an attempt to elicit a response, a cry, or movement

    • Do not shake the baby

  • Call 911

Placement:

  • If there is no response:

    • Place the baby on his or her back on a firm, flat surface

    • Preferably, the surface is a table that puts the baby at your waist level

    • If this is not possible, the floor will suffice

Compressions:

  • Place one hand or two fingers just below the baby’s nipple line in the center of the chest

  • Compress the chest about 1.5 inches

  • Perform 30 compressions before you perform two breaths

    • Count out loud to maintain rhythm, know how many you are on, and to calm yourself during a stressful situation

  • 100-120 compressions in one minute is your goal

Breathing:

  • Place one hand on the baby’s forehead and two fingers under the baby’s chin

  • Gently tilt the baby’s head back

  • Cover the baby’s mouth and nose with your mouth

  • Give two breaths, slowly

    • Leave one second in between each breath

  • Assess for chest rise and fall

Being a superhero isn’t easy. It’s a tough job, but you are more than prepared to perform your duties. Get CPR certified and earn your cape. Remain calm, recall your knowledge, and be the guiding force in any emergency situation. CPR saves lives and, with certification, you can, too.

Saving Lives One Song at a Time

In a recent viral video, a two-year-old girl named Saige Pietroforte performs CPR, applying an AED trainer and giving compressions on an infant mannequin. Her father Chris, a former firefighter and EMT of 19 years, taught her how to administer CPR.  View the video here.

When it comes to learning CPR, you may be thinking, “Am I the right person to do this? Is someone else better suited than me to try and save a life?” However, if a two-year-old child can learn CPR, then why can't you? Everyone benefits from learning CPR. Sign up with a CPR class and earn your certification.

Once you have received training, all you have to remember are these 5 simple rules:

  • Hand position and placement

  • 30:2 (compressions to breaths)

  • Head tilt, chin lift

  • Look for chest rise and fall / signs of life

  • Repeat

When someone requires CPR, you have to be able to spring into action. Your adrenaline is pumping, your palms are sweaty, and your training may flee your mind. You have someone's life literally at your fingertips. With enough practice and proper instruction, these steps will eventually become muscle memory.

One way of developing this muscle memory is to use common songs to keep rhythm when performing 100-120 compressions per minute. A couple of light-hearted songs allow you to think clearly as you perform the required compressions, especially if you are administering for the first time. Saige picked the song “Baby Shark” to aid her in performing CPR on an infant mannequin. “Baby Shark” is an immensely popular children’s song that has the exact rhythm to perform the correct number of compressions. With a little help from their favorite songs, children are learning CPR and becoming future lifesavers everyday.

A more adult song to use as a guide is “Stayin’ Alive,” by the Bee Gees, which is not only a suitable song for the task at hand, but a song that most people know. Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” also works. These songs have been used to help teach children, adolescents, and adults to perform CPR. Any song with 100-120 beats per minute will aid you in keeping track of your compressions.

Learning CPR can seem daunting. However, with the proper training, development of muscle memory, and fun song to calm you and direct your compressions, you will be prepared to administerCPR when an emergency arises.


Why You Should Learn CPR

Did you know that most sudden cardiac arrests occur at home? When an individual becomes unresponsive with no signs of breathing, providing CPR immediately is one of the only ways to possibly save their life.

Unresponsive means pulseless, breathless, or not breathing in a normal fashion. However, you should perform CPR when the individual shows absolutely no signs of life as well. This means you cannot see their chest rise and fall or the person is not responding to a verbal and physical response such as tapping and shouting.

CPR aids in maintaining blood flow to the vital organs, the brain, and the heart. An unresponsive individual’s chance of survival decreases by 7% every minute unaided - so CPR must be performed quickly.

Some emergencies where CPR can be used are:

  • Drug Overdose

  • Drowning

  • Choking

  • Heart attack

  • Suffocation

Certain professions require CPR training, such as lifeguards, teachers, coaches, athletic trainers, and electricians. If you interact with the public, being CPR certified is necessary. However, anyone can learn CPR, including parents, students, and even children. Some Los Angeles schools require CPR certification as a graduation requirement, empowering today’s youth to make a difference and maybe even save a life someday.

There is no downside to knowing how to perform CPR. An emergency can happen at any time in the workplace, at the store, and, most often, at home. The first few minutes of an emergency are the most critical. Knowing what to do and how to respond not only puts witnesses of an incident at ease, but also grants you the feeling of being in control and the ability to help save lives.