First Aid: CPR for Children From 1 Year Old to Puberty

  • By: The DIG for Kids
  • Time to read: 2 min.
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For the purposes of these instructions, a child is considered to be between one year to puberty.

If you have someone with you, send them to dial 999 (or 112) for an ambulance immediately.
If you are alone, carry out CPR for approximately 1 minute before you dial 999 (or 112) for an ambulance.

Give 5 Rescue Breaths
  • Ensure the airway is clear.
  • Close your lips around the child’s mouth and pinch the nose.
  • Blow softly into the lungs while looking at the chest as you breathe. Ensure you take shallow breaths and do not empty your lungs totally.
  • When the chest inflates and rises, stop blowing and allow it to fall.
  • Repeat four times then check for circulation.
Give 30 Chest Compressions
  • Place 1 or 2 hands in the centre of the chest (depending on the size of the child).
  • Use the heel of that hand with arms straight and press down to a third of the depth of the chest.
  • Press 30 times, at a rate of 100 compressions per minute.
  • After 30 compressions, follow with 2 rescue breaths.

Continue resuscitation (2 rescue breaths to 30 compressions) ensuring you don’t stop until help arrives.


When alone, carry out chest compressions and rescue breaths for 1 minute before leaving the child to call an ambulance.

If you are familiar with adult CPR and have no knowledge of child CPR, use the adult sequence.

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

For CPR for babies under a year old, read our article First Aid: CPR For Babies From Birth To 1 Year Old.

Our thanks to St John Ambulance for providing this information.

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