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Breathing or no breathing

Jenny Bourne - Sunday, January 25, 2009

After clearing the airway or the airway is clear how do you assess for breathing in a collapsed casualty? 

In an emeregency situation where there is no danger to you and you have a person who is not responsive, you have called 000 or 112 for an ambulance to assist and you have cleared the airway or their airway is clear. The next step is to check for breathing.

You are close to the caualty's head and shoulder and look to their chest to see if it is rising and falling with each breath, place the back of your hand about 5 cm from their nose and mouth to feel for any breath and listen closely for any breath sounds. If there is no rise and fall of the cheat, you can not fell any breath on your hand and you can hear any breath sounds then the casualty is not breathing and will need to commence CPR.

If they are breathing then roll them into recovery position by placing their arm that is on the opposite side to you out at right angles to their body or directly up beside their head with their upper arm close to their ear. Fold the other arm across their body with it bent at the elbow. Bend their knee up on the side closest to you and then place your hand closest to their head under their shoulder on the side closest to you and your hand that is closest to their feet under their hip on the side closest to you. Now roll them gently to the other side, adjust their arm and hand on the upper side into a natural right angle positions and adjust their leg and foot that is uppermost to be along the ground or floor so the lower part of the leg is parallel to the other leg. Stay with the casualty until medical help arrives as they are unconscious and need assistance.

Until next time continue to be amazing First Aiders.
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