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How to perform CPR on a baby

first aid baby

How to resuscitate a baby under 1 year of age

If your baby is unconscious and not breathing, CPR is a crucial technique that can potentially save their life.

Remember: The procedure is slightly different for babies (under one) and children (aged one to puberty). 


How to perform CPR on a baby

Place the baby on its back on a firm surface.

Give five initial rescue breaths before starting the sequence of

  • 30 chest compressions
  • 2 rescue breaths


Step 1: How to give a rescue breath to a baby

• If there is anything visible in the baby's mouth, pick it out and ensure the airway is clear and open.
•Take a breath in and place your lips around the baby’s mouth and nose to form an airtight seal.
• If you cannot make a seal around the mouth and nose, make a seal around one and close the other
• Blow a breath steadily into the baby's mouth and nose over one second. It should be sufficient to make the chest visibly rise
• Remove your mouth and allow the chest to fall.
• Repeat four times more.
• Now Give 30 chest compressions.


Step 2: How to perform chest compressions on a baby

• Place two fingertips of your lower hand on the centre of the baby’s chest.
• Press down vertically on the breastbone, and press the chest down by at least one-third of its depth.
• Release the pressure without moving your fingers from their chest. Allow the chest to come back up fully – this is one compression.
• Repeat this 30 times, at a rate of about twice a second – the speed of the song ‘Staying Alive’.
• Now give two rescue breaths.
• Carry on giving 30 chest compressions followed by two rescue breaths for as long as you can, or until help arrives.
• If the baby starts breathing normally again, stop CPR and put them in the recovery position.

Step 3: How to put a baby in the recovery position

• Cradle them in your arms, with their head tilted downwards. This will keep their airway open and stop them choking on their tongue or breathing in any vomit. Continue until help arrives.


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