CPR First Aid

The Importance of Recovery Position

The Importance of Recovery Position

A recovery position could potentially save your life, did you know that? If you ever have trouble breathing or feel you might pass out, you should take this position. The recovery position keeps the airway clear and prevents throat occlusion from the tongue. In this blog post, we’ll talk about the significance of the recovery position and how to do it right.

What is the Recovery Position?

The recovery position should be used for a casualty who is unresponsive but breathing and has no other life-threatening illnesses.

The recovery position will keep someone’s airway open and clear. It also ensures the casualty won’t choke on any liquids or vomit.

The recovery position should be used for a casualty who is unresponsive but breathing and has no other life-threatening illnesses. The recovery position will keep someone's airway open and clear. It also ensures the casualty won't choke on any liquids or vomit.

When Do You Use Recovery Position?

Once you have followed DRS ABCD and established the casualty is breathing, you need to place them into the recovery position. It is essential as it is the best position for an unconscious, breathing casualty.

​​An unconscious casualty lying on their back can quickly suffocate on their tongue or stomach contents.

Recovery Position for a Child (1-18 years) or Adult (18+ years)

  • Follow DRS ABCD, and ensure the casualty is breathing effectively.
  • Place both of the casualty’s arms pointing away from you (the closest arm will be across the casualty’s chest).
  • Raise the casualty’s knee closest to you and bend it.
  • Place one hand under the raised knee and the other arm behind the casualty’s shoulders, and remember to support the neck as best as possible.
  • Make sure you hold the casualty’s hip to control the roll and not let the casualty fall onto their front.
  • Gently turn the casualty onto their side facing away from you and bend up the raised knee further to the front of the casualty to ensure they don’t roll onto their front.
  • Make sure the casualty’s mouth is at the lowest point so the stomach contents can drain from the mouth.
  • Lift the chin forward in an open airway position and adjust the hand under the cheek as necessary.
  • Continue monitoring DRS ABCD until an ambulance arrives – never leave an unconscious casualty unattended.
  • If injuries allow, turn the casualty to the other side after 30 minutes.

REMEMBER – WHEN MOVING THE PERSON ONTO THEIR SIDE, MAKE SURE THEIR NECK AND BACK DO NOT MOVE. MAKE SURE YOU ARE ROLLING THE BODY, NOT TWISTING THE SPINE.

Recovery Position for an Infant (Under 1-Year-Old)

For a baby less than a year old, a modified Recovery Position must be adopted:

  • Cradle the infant in your arms, with their head tilted downwards on their side to prevent them from suffocating on their tongue or inhaling stomach contents.
  • Monitor and record vital signs – level of response and breathing until medical help arrives.
  • a 1-handed recovery position can be used by placing your fingers supporting the baby’s neck and jaw.
  • The baby should face the ground so that any vomiting or regurgitation will not obstruct their airways.
  • This position also leaves your other hand free to make phone calls (i.e., 000 / 112), open doors, do back blows for choking, etc.
  • If you need to walk around with the infant, be careful not to trip, as you can easily cause injury by dropping or falling onto the child.

For a baby less than a year old, a modified Recovery Position must be adopted:

When Should the Recovery Position Not Be Used?

You should not utilize the recovery position on a person who has had a cardiac arrest, is not breathing, or is breathing irregularly. Lay them flat on their back and start CPR in this situation.

What are the Steps in Doing a Recovery Position?

According to PositiveChoices, here are the following steps in doing a recovery position.

  1. Kneel at the person’s side.
  2. Stretch their arms and legs out.
  3. Fold the arm closest to you across the chest of the person you are addressing.
  4. Position the opposite arm perpendicular to the body.                         
  5. The nearest leg should be bent at the knee.    
  6. While holding the individual’s head and neck, take the bent knee closest to you and roll the individual away from you.
    Adjust the upper leg so that the knee and hip form a straight angle. Ensure that the individual is stable and cannot roll.
  7. Ensure the airways are clear and open by tilting the head back.

According to PositiveChoices, here are the following steps in doing a recovery position.

What First Aid Courses Can You Study in CPR First Aid Australia?

– If you need a general First Aid qualification, we recommend the HLTAID011 Provide first aid. This also includes CPR qualification. The Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) suggests that this qualification is updated every 3 years.

– If you want to update your CPR qualification, we recommend HLTAID009 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation. The Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) suggests that this qualification is updated annually.

– If you are looking for a first aid qualification to work in the childcare industry and require Anaphylaxis and Asthma training ONLY, then you should consider HLTAID012 Provide an emergency first aid response in an education and care setting.

– If you are working with children, you may also be required to obtain first aid training qualifications in Asthma and Anaphylaxis. You need to check with the employer before enrolling so that the client gets the proper training for their circumstance.

Please note that you still need to confirm with your employer first what qualification you need to take before you book.

In Australia, workplaces must follow occupational health and safety regulations – amongst others, these specify that businesses and care organizations must have personnel on staff with current, recognised workplace-approved CPR and first aid training.

Click here to view a complete list of CPR First Aid courses currently available on RTO’s scope of registration.

Click here to find CPR and first aid courses near you.

ABOUT CPR FIRST AID

RTO No. 21903: CPR First Aid was founded in 2007. We specialize in providing first aid training in CPR, asthma, and anaphylaxis for various workplaces, including childcare, schools, and other industries in NSW, VIC, SA, WA, and QLD. We are a Registered Training Organization with the Australian Skills Quality Authority (No 21903). Our courses and Units are VET-accredited for workplaces in Australia

Conclusion

The recovery position is essential to learn because it could potentially save a life. The recovery position keeps the airway clear and prevents throat occlusion from the tongue. It is also necessary to know its purpose, the steps to perform it, and when and when not to use it. To further understand the recovery position application, you might consider applying for CPR First Aid Classes in Australia.

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