Press "Enter" to skip to content

How to Do CPR on Adults in a Life or Death Situation

If you’ve ever taken a course to become a lifeguard or even a mom or dad who becomes a cool uncle or aunt by teaching their kids how to swim and play catch, chances are you’ve already learned the basics of CPR. We all learn in anticipation of the day that the skills come in handy.

But what do you do when unprepared for such a situation? What do you do when you or a loved one needs to be saved? How to do CPR on adults? Keep reading to learn more. 

Recognize the Signs of Cardiac Arrest

When recognizing the signs of cardiac arrest in an adult, the primary step is to check for unresponsiveness. To do this, tap and shout at them. You can also shake the person’s shoulder. If the person does not respond, call for help and start CPR.

Prepare Yourself to Start CPR

Before starting any CPR, it is important to prepare yourself to be successful and ensure the safety of yourself and the patient. Ensure you are familiar with the basics of CPR and feel confident in performing the procedure.

Put on protective gloves and remove any objects from around the area, like glass or debris. To be confident and know how to do CPR on a human, you can check and get training and certification on

Prepare the Patient and Do the Steps to Perform CPR 

Position the person flat on the back and open their airway. Ensure the person is on a hard surface to reduce choking hazards. If possible, get a bystander to call 911 while you perform CPR.

Listen and feel for breathing for up to 10 seconds. If the person is not breathing, begin chest compressions. With the heel of one hand in the center of the chest, press down at least 2 inches and compress the chest thirty times at a rate of 100/per minute. Give two mouth-to-mouths after that, ensuring the chest lifts with each one.

Continue doing 30 chest compressions and two breaths until help arrives or the person revives. CPR can help extend a person’s life until professional medical assistance arrives and is crucial to survival during a life-or-death situation.

Follow Up After Performing CPR

After knowing what and how to do CPR, following up with further medical care is important. Immediately call 911 or your local Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and explain the situation. The dispatcher can send help and provide you with further instructions.

You can also provide the EMS team with valuable information, such as how long CPR was performed or any information you have on the patient’s medical history. You can then begin performing Rescue Breathing while waiting for help to arrive.

Be sure to provide CPR post-rescue care, such as positioning the person on their side, monitoring their breathing and pulse, and keeping them warm. Following up after performing CPR with the appropriate medical aid can help save a life.

Learn How to Do CPR on Adults

CPR, when performed correctly on an adult, is a life-saving technique. Time is of the essence, so quickly assess the situation and call 911 if needed. Don’t hesitate to act – the potential outcome could be life or death.

Read this article, join a CPR class, or watch an instructional video to learn how to do CPR on adults properly and confidently in a life-or-death situation.

In the meantime, check out some of our other articles and learn more today!

Featured Image by