First Aid For Heart Attack

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First Aid for heart attack is as simple as knowing how to provide CPR correctly. The fastest way to learn CPR is to take a basic First Aid Course with a Registered Training Organisation. Once you have completed your course, you will retain the information and lifesaving skills for the rest of your life.

The first question we must ask is how does the average person who has never taken any level of First Aid help someone who suddenly falls unconscious and is not breathing in front of them at the supermarket, in the classroom, workspace, or anywhere at all? If you could use a refresher or are learning for the first time reading this article, let’s look at what a heart attack is and how CPR can save a life.

Is There A Difference Between Cardiac Arrest And Having A Heart Attack

 Yes! Clinically speaking, they are two different conditions, and that is why they have different names that non-medical people incorrectly use interchangeably. That being said, there is no way to tell from the outside which of the two conditions a person has suffered, so we collectively say that someone had a heart attack.

A heart attack is a “circulation” problem caused when a blockage prevents blood flow to the heart in an artery. The blockage prevents the blood from moving and carrying the freshly oxygenated blood to the brain and then circulate it around the body via the circulatory system.

 Cardiac arrest should be considered an “electrical signal malfunction” where the heart suddenly stops beating unexpectedly. Think of it like the spark plug in your heart (called the AV node) misfires, or stops firing completely, causing an electrical malfunction to occur that stops the heart from beating in the correct rhythm or completely.

What Does Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Mean

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation is the act of bringing a living entity back from apparent death or unconsciousness. When combined in the ratio of 2 rescue breaths and 30 chest compressions set to a 100-120 bpm rhythm, you are providing CPR that might save the person’s life.

What Is First Aid For A Heart Attack

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, commonly abbreviated to the acronym CPR, is the lifesaving technique crucial in trying to restart a heart that has stopped beating after the person has suffered a cardiac arrest or the person has stopped breathing.

Note: A person who suffered a heart attack may never be revived. The blockage that caused the heart to stop beating in the first place prevents CPR measures from working. The only way to tell which of the two conditions a person suffered is via an autopsy upon their death, by MRI imaging and ECG testing in a hospital, or through the use of an AED that picks up electrical current activity in the heart if it is present.

Two times CPR is routinely used by a First Aid responder are for heart attack or drowning. CPR is used any time someone’s breathing, heartbeat, or both, has completely stopped.

Treatment For Heart Attack

CPR is the predominantly applied emergency procedure given to anyone who has had a sudden cardiac arrest. Defibrillation using an automated external defibrillator (AED) is another option for getting a heart that suddenly stopped pumping blood working again by using electric shocks to restart the heart. Think of an AED as a battery pack and your heart as an empty battery. The AED delivers electric shocks where required to jump-start your heart and get the AV node firing again.

Cardiac Arrest Chest Compressions

Chest compressions describe the act of pushing down on the chest, deep enough that you allow the heart valves to open and push blood through the heart in a one-way direction. The blood is pushed out of the heart and towards the brain when you push down on the chest. When you release, the valve closes and locks the blood in place until you push down again.

Think of the blood moving through the arteries as a little car. The faster you compress and release, the faster the car gets around the body and back to the heart for fresh oxygen. It takes one blood cell 20 seconds in a healthy body to do one full lap of the circulatory system.

Compressions act as an external heartbeat for the person you are giving CPR. If you stop externally beating their heart for them, the blood cannot move through the body to keep the brain alive. When the brain dies, all other vital organs shut down, and the person dies.

When Can Cardiac Resuscitation Can Be Stopped

You can officially stop CPR after 20 minutes if no viable cardiac rhythm has been re-established.

If a solo person is giving CPR without relief, then as long as the person can physically provide CPR without endangering their own life if they are not fit enough to last twenty minutes.

Few people could reasonably provide solo CPR for twenty continuous minutes at the ideal 100-120 beats per minute ratio. Sometimes, despite trying, life cannot be restored. We are all born to die eventually.

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