Seven Basic Life Saving Skills That Everyone Should Know

You never know when you can find yourself faced with an emergency. It could be that someone you are with is injured or in trouble, or you could encounter a stranger who needs medical attention. Regardless of the circumstances, the ability to act in an emergency and save a life is an invaluable skill that everyone should have. Learning some basic life saving skills will have you covered in most types of emergencies, with these seven areas being the most important to know:

1. Learning Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) CPR

If someone has a heart attack, performing CPR can make the difference between the life and death. When the heart stops during a cardiac arrest, CPR manually pumps blood and oxygen to the brain and organs to keep the victim alive until emergency medical help arrives. Proper CPR training is the best way to learn this technique, but even without it you can perform CPR chest compressions. Press on the victim’s chest at least two inches down, at the rate of two compressions per second, or 120 compressions per minute. Continue without stopping until emergency assistance can take over.

2. Using The Automated External Defibrillator (AED) – AEDIn addition to performing CPR during a cardiac arrest, knowing how to use an AED (automated external defibrillator) is a critical skill to have. While CPR keeps blood flowing, it does not restart the heart. To do this, and AED is needed. These devices are available in public areas like shopping centers and airports. certification is recommended, however even without formal AED training the voice automated machine will walk rescuers through the steps needed to use it on a cardiac arrest victim. 

3. Check for Signs of LifeSign_of_life

In any emergency it’s important to know how to check a victim for signs of life, including breathing and a pulse. First, make sure the area is safe for you to attend to the victim. Next, kneel next to them and ask loudly, “Are you ok?” If they do not respond look for the rise and fall of their chest to indicate breathing and check their pulse by placing your index and middle fingers on their inner wrist or on the side of their neck just under the jaw.

 4. Using The Bandage –BandageWhen a victim is bleeding heavily it’s important to get it under control right away to prevent further blood loss. If they are available, put gloves on before assisting the victim. Have them lie down and cover them with a blanket. Elevate the injured area and use a clean cloth or bandage to cover the wound and apply continuous pressure for 20 minutes before checking to see if the bleeding has stopped. If the bleeding has not stopped, apply pressure to the artery, either inside the arm between the elbowand the armpitfor arm or upper body injuries, or behind the knee or in the groin for leg injuries. Apply pressure with one hand while continuing to keep pressure on the wound with the other hand.

5. Heimlich maneuver – ChockingPerforming the Heimlich maneuver is the recommended treatment for choking victims. Standing behind them, deliver five blows to the middle of their back with the heel of your hand. If that does not dislodge the stuck object, wrap your arms around their chest, and make a fist between the bottom of their ribcage and their navel. Perform five rapid abdominal thrusts, pulling back and upward on their body as if you were trying to lift them off the ground.

6. First Aid for Burning –BurnMinor burns should be treated by running cold water on the area for 10 minutes then lightly applying a cool, moist compress to the area. Do not apply creams or dressings to the area. Give the victim Tylenol or Advil if available. Severe burns require immediate medical attention by calling 911. 

7.Save from Drowning – drownOne of the most common causes of accidental death, drowning can happen even in shallow bodies of water. The phrase “reach, throw, row, go” is used to remember the technique used to save a person who is drowning:

  • Reach: Lie flat on the ground and use a branch or oar to extend your reach if needed.
  • Throw: If a safety ring is available, toss it to the victim.
  • Row: Get a boat to reach the victim if needed. Go: As a last resort, swim out to get the victim. Use a towel or t-shirt to help tow them to shore.

These skills and more are taught in basic life saving skills courses. In a BLS training program you will learn the proper techniques for rescuing victims in a wide variety of situations. After completing your training, you will be awarded nationally recognized BLS certification that is valid for two years.

 Enroll Now for Online Basic Life Support Training & Certification Classes at just $44.95.