When it comes to life threatening situations we all tend to think they are not something we should be concerned about. Many people don’t want to think about it, or come up with the greatest excuses to justify the fact they are not CPR trained. Some of the most frequent excuses are the lack of time and the lack of motivation. People, understandably, don’t see the point of getting trained as they are hopeful that they will never need to save a life.
However, data provided by the American Heart Association will probably make you reconsider your careless approach. In the US, Sudden Cardiac Arrest is one of the top causes of death in the world. It can happen anytime to anyone, even if apparently healthy until the second before. Nearly 383,000 out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrests occur annually and 88 percent of cardiac arrests occur at home.
A bystander who is able to perform CPR and provide shocks through an AED is likely to be the only way a life can be saved. In those situations however, only 32% of cardiac arrest victims receive CPR from a bystander.
So even if you think you shouldn’t be concerned, you better be. You cannot be sure that people around you will never need your help. Sudden Cardiac Arrest is not the only event in which CPR can be life-saving: think about alcohol or drugs overdose, allergic reactions or suffocation, choking and other everyday life situations.
Not convinced, yet? Still scared, or thinking that you are afraid of doing more harm than good? Then you should realise that it’s way better to do something than doing nothing at all. Performing CPR immediately after a SCA can double or triple a victim’s chance of survival. Not to mention the fact that it would also give the victim a better chance of recovery. Indeed, once the heart stops beating, brain death occurs in 4 to 6 minutes. Since the average time for medical emergency rescuer to intervene is 11 minutes, only a bystander can prevent permanent disability and death from happening. If that was not enough, just try to think about an imaginary situation in which something has happened to you. If your heart stops while you’re walking through down the street, wouldn’t you like to have someone nearby who actually knows how to save your life?
Only 8% of the victims of an out-of-hospital SCA survive. Help raise this percentage.
Maybe your motivation is now a little stronger, but probably you are still thinking that you don’t have enough time to learn and train. Well, you are wrong. No matter how busy you are, learning how to save a life is incredibly easier and faster than you may think. Look for the closest BLS-D course and find a solution that fits your schedule: there is one, for sure. If you still don’t have time to attend a course, just spend five minutes reading this article(link to the how to) or take a look at this video(link).
Getting informed and memorising at least the theory of CPR and AED use would save time in a real emergency, stopping you from panicking and feeling unable to help.