CPR First Aid

CPR: Don’t Make These Common Mistakes

Do you want to learn CPR and First Aid? This can be your guide. You may check our very informative blog on how to perform CPR for infants, children and adults.

Learning Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is an excellent way to provide yourself with the skills needed to help in an emergency. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the most common mistakes people make when you perform CPR. We’ll also provide tips on how to avoid these mistakes and ensure that you are providing the best possible care for someone who is in need.

What is CPR?

When someone suffers a cardiac arrest, their heart stops beating and they may become unconscious. CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) is a lifesaving technique that can help to restart the heart and restore breathing. It is very important to do this while waiting for an ambulance or a healthcare provider. The recommended ratio for chest compressions to rescue breaths is 30:2, which means that for every 30 compressions, you should give 2 rescue breaths.

However, if you are not trained in CPR or if you are unsure of the ratio, it is better to give chest compressions only. Chest compressions should be performed at a rate of 100-120 per minute. In our current condition of the COVID-19 pandemic, rescue breaths are optional, and have to check for ethical considerations first.

Revive heart with CPR during cardiac arrest. Vital while awaiting medical help.

How Many Compressions Are Needed to Perform CPR?

Everyone must know how to perform CPR in case of an emergency. As you read further, you will know how many compressions are needed and how it is performed depending on whether the patient is an infant, child, or adult. 

Learn CPR: vital life-saving skill for infants, kids, adults.

CPR and Compressions on Infants (0-12 months)

The Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC), recommends using DRSABCD action plan.

According to multiple resources’ first aid fact sheets, CPR consists of 2 techniques – 30 chest compressions and 2 breaths of mouth-to-mouth. Aim for 5 sets of 30 chest compressions to 2 breaths in about 2 minutes.

Before Starting a Baby CPR

It’s essential to check if the surroundings are safe to do an infant CPR.

  1. Check the area and see if there is danger to you and the baby
  2. See if the baby responds by talking loudly and squeezing their shoulders
  3. Call 000 for an ambulance if the infant is not responding or breathing abnormally

Check the Airway through the Baby’s Mouth

The next step is to check if the child’s mouth contains anything that obstructs the airway.

  1. Put the baby on a firm surface
  2. Check the infant’s mouth for airway obstructions such as food, vomit, or blood
  3. Check their breathing by looking at the movement of the baby’s chest (such as chest rise), listening for breathing sounds, and feeling for breath on your cheek
  4. Put them in a recovery position on their side with the infant’s head titled down
  5. Continue monitoring baby’s breathing and responses while waiting for a representative from St John Ambulance Australia who may bring them to a children’s hospital

Chest Compression Steps for Infants

Here are the important steps to do chest compression for infants. You may need to use the palm of your hand instead of your fingers depending on the size of your baby.

  1. Lie your baby on their back. 
  2. Place 2 fingers on the lower half of your baby’s breastbone (in the middle of their chest).
  3. Press down with your fingers (or palm for babies over 6 months) to about a third of the depth of the chest, then release to the rest position. 
  4. This counts as one compression. 
  5. If the chest does not rise and/or there are no signs of life, recheck the mouth for any obstructions. Then, ensure there is a good seal around the mouth and nose

Child CPR and Compression 

Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) also applies the recommendation of using DRSABCD.

CPR also consists of 2 techniques – 30 chest compressions and 2 breaths of mouth-to-mouth.

Aim for 5 sets of 30 chest compressions to 2 breaths in about 2 minutes.

Chest Compression Steps for Children

Infants and children have the same number of compression and rescue breaths BUT different compression steps.

  1. Lie your child on their back. Kneel beside them.
  2. Place the heel of one hand on the lower half of your child’s breastbone (in the middle of their chest).
  3. Position yourself above your child’s chest
  4. Keep your arm straight and press down on your chest to a third in-depth, then release the pressure. 

CPR and Compression on Adults

Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) also applies the recommendation of using DRSABCD.

CPR also consists of 2 techniques – 30 chest compressions and 2 breaths of mouth-to-mouth.

Aim for 5 sets of 30 chest compressions to 2 breaths in about 2 minutes. If you can’t do mouth-to-mouth, stick with continuous compressions at a rate of approximately 100 per minute.

Chest Compression Steps for Adults

  1. Place the heel of one hand on the lower half of the person’s breastbone (in the middle of their chest).
  2. Place your other hand on top of your bottom hand and grasp your wrist. Or you may like to interlock your fingers – depending on what feels comfortable.
  3. Keep your arms straight and press down on your chest by one-third of their chest depth. 

Release the pressure – this counts as one compression. 

Popular tunes can help keep the rhythm of compressions. To keep the correct rhythm of compressions, you may like to use these popular songs:

  • ‘Staying alive’ by the Bee Gees 
  • ‘Row, row, row, your boat’
  • ‘Baby shark’

Rescue Breaths for Infants, Children and Adults

Rescue breaths for infants, children, and adults are 2 breaths of mouth-to-mouth for every 30 chest compressions. In newborns and children, The Red Cross Organisation states that it is done by placing them in a neutral position using the head-tilt/infant’s chin-lift technique.

However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, it may be optional depending on the assessment and ethical considerations. We have the guidance for performing breathing assessments and rescue breaths for infants, children, and adults.

Infant, child, adult rescue: 2 breaths, 30 compressions. Neutral position, head-tilt/chin-lift.

What are the Common Mistakes to Avoid in Performing CPR Compressions?

When performing CPR, you must be aware of the common mistakes to prevent and help someone correctly. Here’s the list to watch out for:

Applying Less Pressure

We don’t want to hurt anyone, but many of us struggle to apply the right amount of pressure to this part of the body. However, this frequently occurs, which ultimately has minimal impact on someone who is having a cardiac arrest. Keep up the right pace and use the right amount of pressure (depth at least 2 inches). A bender, a rocker, a bouncer, a massager, or a double-crosser is also a no-no.

Forming Hands Incorrectly

The way you position your hand greatly affects CPR effectiveness. Do not separate your hands during CPR, as this will lessen the force and keep you from providing the proper pressure. Keep your hands on each other, with the top hand’s fingers interlaced with the bottom ones, so you apply direct pressure to the centre of the chest without losing your grip.

Failure to Call the Emergency Hotline

Calling for help should always be your priority. Performing CPR is one thing, but finding further help is another. It can be challenging to remain calm in emergencies, especially if you are the one giving CPR. If you don’t ask for assistance, the ambulance won’t come. People who require CPR require additional medical care, therefore you should notify the appropriate authorities right away.

Failing to Use a Defibrillator

Most public places have an automated external defibrillator (AED) with a paediatric capability available which is helpful in significantly improving the heart’s rhythm. But, due to the lack of familiarity and knowledge of using it, people miss taking advantage of the devise. This is why the content of first aid training and related life support training courses includes its proper usage through a step-by-step guide.

This devise is beneficial for adults but multiple resources warn not to use it on children under 1 year of age.

Can I Enroll in a CPR Course in Brisbane?

CPR First Aid is glad to offer that in Brisbane, Australia,NRT Logo HLTAID009 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation is available. The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)-regulates this first aid course provider. It also has training centres in Victoria, NSW, Western and South Australia. Information on the costs, course details, and other terms are found on the organisation’s website.

What is the NRT LogoHLTAID009 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation First Aid Course?

The CPR training provides the skills and knowledge required to perform Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) in line with the Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) Guidelines. This CPR update course is the most recent version of what is often referred to as the CPR Update or CPR Refresher. It includes the usage of AED and its contents (main unit, pediatric pads, wires, and buttons/controls).


Identifying mistakes to avoid in performing CPR is also a vital part of learning it. CPR can save lives in a variety of circumstances, particularly cardiac arrest. After all, some situations call for a quick solution and cannot wait for an ambulance or a doctor. Applying less pressure, forming hands incorrectly and failing to call emergency hotlines are common and if corrected, CPR would be effective and save lives! 




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