Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, also known as CPR, increases a person’s chance of survival in emergency situations. You may be certified in CPR, know someone who is, or are simply interested in it after seeing local advertisements for CPR classes. Statistics show that effectively performing CPR can double a person’s chance of survival. Here are five things everyone should know about CPR:

Anyone Can Perform CPR

Although many people use CPR in a professional way, training for CPR is easy and anyone can do it. Many survivors of emergency medical problems have benefitted from a bystander performing CPR until a trained medical technician could arrive on scene. By taking a CPR certification course, you may feel empowered to help those in need should an emergency strike. You can be the reason someone lives through a near death experience by getting CPR certification.

Chest Compressions Are More Important Than Mouth-to-Mouth

Most of us think of mouth-to-mouth when we think of CPR. While this was always an important part of the process, new guidelines recommend you don’t perform mouth-to-mouth during resuscitation. The most important element of CPR is getting blood to the brain. Continued compressions are the most effective way to deliver this result.

You May Need to Use an AED

An automated external defibrillator, or AED, is also used to save lives in emergency situations. CPR is done to keep blood flowing to the brain, so it doesn’t restart a person’s heart. For this, AEDs are used. An AED can also be used by anybody. When you turn on an AED, it talks to you, walking you through the process step by step. AEDs deliver an electric show to the heart, restarting it. Because of the advances in technology, AEDs can analyze the heart and only deliver a shock if it is necessary.

Children Require Different Techniques

Just think about how different a child’s body is compared to an adult. You may be in an emergency and feel that administering chest compressions will literally break the child. Although children are much more resilient than we realize, you do need to exercise caution when performing CPR on a child. Talk to a professional about the differences in CPR between adults and children to better educate yourself on how you can help in an emergency.

CPR Will Leave You Worn Out

It is well known within the medical community that CPR is exhausting. Over time, it can be physically demanding. Even in a remote situation, you might need the help of someone else to keep CPR going until a medical professional can get to the scene. When you witness an emergency, adrenaline gets your blood pumping and you can react quickly. But, afterwards, you might feel warn out! This is completely normal as CPR is a demanding task that will leave you feeling tired, especially after the adrenaline rush slows down.

CPR is best performed by a medical professional who is trained and certified in providing the right care. But, CPR classes and certifications are also available for civilians. You never know when you can jump in and help save someone’s life. Check out your local listings for CPR certification courses in your area.