Are you bleeding? There’s probably an app to help with that! Or a website… and a book. And even if your cell phone has been disconnected, as long as the battery still works then calling 911 still works.
Let me just tell you… CPR training today is not the same model that I had 15 years ago. According to our instructor, if it has been a long time since you attended (3 or more years), then a lot has changed. 15 years ago I attended a day long course of book chapters, lectures, and practicing putting a splint on someone. My class 15 years ago also included practicing the Heimlich maneuver, and also practicing CPR/ mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. And 15 years ago we were given a CPR handbook to take home with us.
The class my wife and I attended last week was nothing like that. We learned everything we needed to learn for a basic emergency (which is different from a complicated emergency). But our class was only three hours long. It was like being in a totally different world.
Our instructor said that their studies on CPR training showed that 60 days after the training, people had forgotten nearly everything they had been taught. So instead we spent three hours having a few keep points branded onto our brains. The A, B,C’s of saving someone’s life.
A – Are they breathing. If not, help them breathe.
B – Are they bleeding? If yes, plug the hole.
C – Are they conscious? If not, make sure they are laying in a position that allows them to breathe easily.
If you think it is necessary to call 911, then call 911. If it seems bad but you aren’t sure if you should call 911, call 911.
In the past people were getting hung up on field stitches, bandages, or some other way to stop the bleeding because they remembered bits and pieces of their CPR training from 1 year ago.
- First reason they were doing it wrong, because they were not pushing deep enough on the baby’s chest. What he demonstrated was about a 2-inch push down, and most people learned to do 1/2 inch or less.
- Second, many people had been told to hold the baby in one arm while doing the chest compressions. But what happens is that when a person pushes down on the baby, the arm they are holding the baby with also gets pushed down. Thus, this creates very little or NO chest compression for the baby. Learning this was really awkward for me because I remember being trained to do CPR on babies the way he told us was now wrong. Blah! So one of the few things I remembered about CPR from 15 years ago was wrong anyway.
Something else that I thought was interesting was that he talked about wilderness survival. He said there are a lot of people who go hiking, camping, fishing… and they have NO first aid training. So if they break their leg or some other injury, they have little or no ability to survive. He said there are wilderness survival workshops that teach first aid for those situations, but most hikers/campers/etc have not taken them. Most people forget that 9-1-1 only works if you have cell phone service (which the best outdoors places in my opinion still do not). Our instructor suggested anyone who does wilderness survival should have with them a small first aid book which will help them deal with any issues they may encounter.
So, this was my second time having a CPR class… but the first time in 15 years.
When was the last time you had CPR training? Do you think you are up to date about what to do in a crisis?
*This is a summary of my experience about what I learned at CPR classes and should not be substituted for actual CPR certification and/or medical training*