First Aid: CPR for Babies From Birth to 1 Year Old

  • By: The DIG for Kids
  • Time to read: 2 min.
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For the purposes of these instructions, a baby is considered to be less than 1 year old.

If you have someone with you, send them to dial 999 (or 112) for an ambulance immediately. If you are on your own carry out CPR for 1 min before calling the emergency services.

Give 5 Rescue Breaths:
  • Ensure the airway is clear.
  • Close your lips around the baby’s nose and mouth.
  • Blow gently into the lungs, looking at the chest as you breathe. Fill your cheeks with air and use this amount each time.
  • When the chest inflates, stop blowing and allow the chest to fall.
  • Repeat this 5 times.
Give 30 Chest Compressions:
  • Place the baby on a firm, flat surface.
  • Locate a position in centre of the chest.
  • Use 2 fingers to press down sharply to a third of the depth of the chest.
  • Press 30 times, at a rate of 100 compressions per minute.
  • For every 30 compressions, 2 Rescue Breaths need to follow.
  • Continue resuscitation (30 compressions to 2 rescue breath) without stopping until help arrives.

When alone, carry out chest compressions and rescue breaths for approximately 1 minute before taking the infant with you to call an ambulance.

If you are familiar with adult CPR and have no knowledge of infant CPR, use the adult sequence using two fingers for compression.

It is possible to identify the correct hand position without removing the infant’s clothes.

For CPR on older children, read our article First Aid: CPR for Children From 1 Year Old to Puberty.

Our thanks to St John Ambulance for providing this information.

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