An arm floating in a pool

It’s never too early for CPR training for kids. Kids doing CPR training are learning valuable life skills that can help them save lives and react confidently in emergency situations. According to the American Heart Association, children as young as 9 years old can not only learn CPR, but retain that information as they grow. So let’s take a look at the ins and outs of children learning and using CPR.

Effective CPR Skills

CPR training for kids focuses on recognizing when CPR is needed and delivering it effectively. CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, is a method of using chest compressions and external ventilation assistance to try to save the life of someone experiencing cardiac arrest. In cardiac arrest, the heart stops beating for one of a variety of reasons. When this happens, blood stops circulating through the body, and death can occur in minutes as the body uses up oxygenated blood and waste materials begin to build up.

The goal of CPR training for kids is to teach them how to deliver proper chest compressions to manually force contractions of the heart to circulate blood and how to deliver air to the victim in an attempt to keep their blood oxygenated to a level that their life is preserved until first responders can arrive and take over. In an emergency, seconds matter, and giving your kids the skills they need to make the most of those seconds can help them save a life.

Why Kids Doing CPR Is Needed

While cardiac arrest is often seen as a problem for older men, anyone can fall victim. In fact, cardiac arrest among youth, especially athletes, is on the rise. This means CPR training for kids is more important now than ever. Kids are at school, going to activities, in supermarkets with their parents, hanging out on the weekends–quite literally almost everywhere. While often overlooked, it gives them an opportunity to be in a position to help those in need when an emergency strikes.

How Young Is Too Young

While the AHA says kids as young as 9 can learn and retain CPR instruction effectively, that doesn’t mean that younger kids can’t benefit. If they’re old enough to pay attention to the class and understand instructions, they can begin setting the foundation for this vital life skill. As for the effectiveness of their CPR technique, that is not bound by the age of the child, but by their strength.

CPR training for kids focuses on the same movements taught in adult CPR classes. These movements are meant to teach a responder how to adequately compress the rib cage in the proper area to provide manual blood circulation. For smaller children, potentially well into their teens, the amount of force needed to compress a full-grown adult’s chest may be beyond them. They can, however, learn how to give appropriate respirations and learn the movements so that, as they grow and become stronger, they’re prepared to intervene in an emergency situation.

In addition, many providers that offer CPR training for kids also offer first aid training. This is a huge boon for safety, as it teaches children how to treat minor injuries and other medical emergencies, such as near drownings. While pool safety covers and safety fences are deterrents to accidental injuries around a pool, having kids doing CPR or first aid interventions until EMS arrives can help ensure that lives aren’t lost.

A boy floating in a swimming pool.

Finding Classes For You And Your Kids

Luckily, finding CPR training for kids is relatively easy–and while you’re at it, you can find classes to get your certification too! In the United States, most CPR classes are associated with either the American Heart Association or the American Red Cross. You can find AHA classes here or to find an ARC class, they have a tool here. Be sure to check on the requirements set out for each class. Many youth organizations, such as the Scouts, Girl Scouts, and Spiral Scouts, also coordinate instructors coming into local groups to teach everyone valuable life-saving skills.

Most CPR training for kids provides the basic materials needed, but it’s always a good idea to give your kids an extra pen and some paper for note-taking. In addition, try to make sure they eat a good breakfast–but don’t overeat– prior to class to aid their attention, and arrive early so you have a chance to meet the instructor and help your children get settled. The investment in extra time for better engagement can be a real lifesaver.

Make Sure They Have The Tools To Save Lives

Once they’ve had CPR training for kids, you’ll want to make sure they can more easily put their skills to use when needed. Ensure you have a CPR/first aid kit in your vehicles, home, and pool area. They should be easily found, well-stocked with the essentials likely needed, and checked regularly for expiration dates and usage. Part of the equipment included should be a CPR barrier that helps rescuers give mouth-to-mouth without risking inhalation of aspirated material from the victim.

While you’re putting together your first aid kit, make sure your pool area is as safe as it can be. This includes installing safety fences and safety covers to provide a physical barrier to help prevent drowning injuries. Contact us with the form on our website, and one of our specialists will help design the custom pool safety features that protect your family, friends, and pets while maintaining a beautiful pool area. Create a safer pool with Aqua-Safe Unlimited today.

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