Baby first aid – emergency care for your babies health

Basic First Aid (Baby first aid) for Parents of Babies

As parents of a baby, the last thing you want to consider is your baby being in a critical condition. However, knowing basic first aid (baby first aid) techniques could make a crucial difference for your baby if an emergency situation does arise.
Surveys, carried out in 2015 by St John Ambulance,, The national “Save a Life Survey” and Mother & Baby Magazine, have revealed some shocking results.

Of those surveyed;

  • 59% wouldn’t feel confident enough to try and save a life;
  • 57% would leave an injured child until an ambulance arrived;
  • 41% think it would take the death of a loved one to make them learn first aid;
  • 72% would not know how to assist an unconscious child, administer CPR or deal with burns and scalds;
  • Only 19% of parents surveyed had been on a first aid course over the previous five years.

This article offers some basic first aid tips for parents of babies (a baby is from birth to one year old).
If your baby is unresponsive, you should;
Step 1 – Check for breathing. Place your baby on their side with their head slightly tilted back, supported, and lower than their bottom. Feel for breaths.

  • If they are breathing call 999
  • If they are not breathing, tell someone to call 999 (If you’re alone, carry out steps 2 and 3 and then make the call yourself)

Step 2 – Give 5 rescue breaths. Seal your mouth over their nose and mouth and blow five times.

  • You are acting as your baby’s lungs by blowing into them. This helps to keep enough oxygen in your baby’s blood.

Step 3 – Give 30 chest compressions. Push firmly in the middle of their chest with two fingers so the chest goes inward, then release.

  • You are acting as your baby’s heart. Pumping blood to your baby’s vital organs.

Step 4 – Give two rescue breaths and then 30 more chest compressions.

  • Repeat this step until help arrives or your baby starts breathing.

Baby first aid – Choking

If your baby is choking, you should;
Step 1 – Give up to five back blows. Hold your baby face down along your thigh with their head lower than their bottom. Hit them firmly on their back between the shoulder blades up to five times. If back blows do not dislodge the object, move on to step two.

  • Ensure you support your baby’s head while in this position. The back blow creates a strong vibration and pressure in the airway – this is often enough to dislodge the blockage.

Step 2 – Give up to five chest thrusts. Turn your baby over so they are facing upwards and place two fingers in the middle of their chest just below the nipples. Push sharply downwards up to five times.

  • Chest thrusts squeeze the air out of your baby’s lungs which can also help to dislodge the blockage.

Step 3 – Get someone to call 999 if the object does not dislodge. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until the object dislodges, help arrives, or your baby becomes unresponsive.

  • If you are alone, call 999 before repeating steps 1 and 2.

If your baby suffers a head injury, you should;
Step 1 – Get the baby or child to rest and apply something cold to the injury (e.g. frozen vegetables wrapped in a tea towel).

  • Applying something cold to a head injury will reduce external swelling and pain

Step 2 – If they become drowsy, they vomit, or their condition deteriorates, call 999.

  • This could be a sign of a serious injury to the head

At Tutorcare we offer a range of paediatric health care courses for parents or care workers.  For more information take a look at our basic paediatric first aid course  or follow this link to  view a full range of child health care courses.
Baby first aid References