I have always aspired to obtain my CPR certification, because I have worried that I will one day be placed in a situation where knowing this information will be vital to keeping someone alive. Because my future profession is health-care related, I am required to have my certification going into my grad school program.
I wasn’t sure what to expect out of the 3 hour class I took with a few of my friends, who are also Occupational Therapy majors. When we arrived to the class I was intrigued by the many large and small dummies that were evenly placed around the room. After watching a few informational videos, we were able to start our hands-on learning.
The instructor gave us short demonstrations of how to actually perform CPR. We learned how to do 30 quick compressions, followed by 2 breaths into the mouth. We also learned how to use AED kits, which are located around hospitals, schools, etc. in order to keep a person alive during the wait of an ambulance arriving. The AED kits include tags/cords that can be stuck onto a person’s skin. This machine then verbally tells a person what to do next. If the heartbeat is irregular, the machine will say “shock is needed,” and all of the surrounded helpers should clear the area. Following this, the shock will be enacted and manual CPR should start again.
I couldn’t believe how exhausting performing CPR was. I couldn’t last more than 2-3 minutes, because the compressions were so difficult to keep even and on-going. I really enjoyed the experience, though, because I now feel that I could potentially save a person’s life in a time of crisis.