Seniors Outreach - October 17, 2018

Many times we hear about someone who has had some type of heart issue or medical crisis in a community situation and has been in need of a life-saving action. These actions may be responses to heart attacks, strokes, accidents, and/or choking emergencies. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) training are two different life-saving techniques, that when used together, are the most effective way of saving a victim of sudden cardiac arrest.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) usually includes two parts :

1. “Rescue Breaths” from your breath to that of the person in crisis, and

2. Hands only CPR where chest compressions are delivered.

In this day and age it seems that many of us are concerned about delivering “rescue breaths” (artificial respiration) on a stranger and therefore a challenge arises about whether or not to do chest compressions & rescue breaths (“artificial respiration”) in conventional CPR. As a result CPR is often delayed. There is strong evidence that the longer CPR is delayed, the worse the outcome for the patient.

Several studies have shown hands only CPR to be just as effective compared to conventional CPR in the first few minutes. This is because the body has a ‘reserve’ of Oxygen in the blood lasting several minutes. (source: “http://www.whatiscpr.info/common-cpr-questions/how-does-cpr-work/” www.whatiscpr.info/common-cpr-questions/how-does-cpr-work/)

An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is a type of defibrillator designed to be used by laypeople with no formal medical training. All defibrillators work on the sample principle. They deliver electrical shocks to the heart. A common cause of cardiac arrest is disorganised electrical activity in the heart. (source: http://www.firstaidforfree.com/how-does-an-aed-work/” www.firstaidforfree.com/how-does-an-aed-work/ )

What is important to note is that the AED works best in relationship to the manual hands on CPR in order to bring about a healthy heart response.

Further to this, as seniors, sometimes we may have a sense that there is little, if anything, that we can personally do. However, having some understanding and recognition of these techniques provides for awareness and a sense of what to do in a crisis. We would then, many times, be able to do something that could save a life.

Seniors Outreach will be holding a CPR/AED 1 hour session by Carol Terpstra (EMT) in partnership with three of the senior centres in Kneehill County on Thursday, October 18, 2018.

10:00 a.m. at the CommUnity Drop-In Centre, Three Hills.

2:00 p.m. at the Silver Willows Centre, Torrington.

6:00 p.m. Potluck and 6:45 p.m. Presentation at the 50+ Club, Care & Share Centre, Linden.

Join us and be informed!

Reminder: Community Bus Runs in Three Hills are on Tuesdays and Thursdays in the afternoon and a monthly bus run to Red Deer for seniors.