Emergency equipment is important to have on hand, especially since critical situations can develop at a moment’s notice. However, most of us rarely interact with tools such as AEDs and fire extinguishers before we desperately need them. So, in preparation for the next emergency, here is when and how to use an AED device.
When It Is Appropriate To Use an AED
An AED, or automated external defibrillator, is a device typically found in public buildings and fitness centers. The instrument itself is generally demarcated by a red heart with a lightning bolt running through it. The AED is used for a victim of sudden cardiac arrest when a person’s heart stops beating effectively. The patient will be unresponsive and not breathing normally. The machine analyzes the heart rhythm and if necessary uses an electric shock to reboot the heart’s natural pacemaker system in the hopes that it restores the heart’s normal rhythm.
How To Begin
When you discover that a person is unresponsive and not breathing normally or only gasping you should locate the nearest AED. Ask a nearby person to call 911 or other local emergency number and to go get the AED, while you perform CPR. When the AED arrives, you must first turn the machine on, then follow all the voice and visual prompts. Since AED makers know people only use their products in emergencies, they typically provide audio and even visual instructions that serve as guidance along the way. While the AED powers up, open the person’s shirt and clear off their chest. You will then attach the AED pads to the persons bare chest—these will administer the electrical shock.
Once the device is ready, have everyone stand clear, including yourself, and push the next button as prompted by the machine. Depending on the make and model, this could initiate an analysis function or directly administer a shock. After the shock, immediately begin CPR. The AED will continue to prompt you through these steps and cycle back through the process as needed.
What To Do After
Once an ambulance arrives, depending on who is at the scene, you should tell any front desk personnel or the property manager that you used their AED. They will then be responsible for either putting it back together or replacing the device. If you are looking for AED devices for sale, check out our selection at Frontline Health.
Knowing when and how to use an AED device can save someone’s life in an emergency. Your quick thinking and swift action can be the difference between life and death, especially if a person’s heart has stopped beating. Remember to look for basic lifesaving skills courses in your area to learn more and gain practice with real AEDs. Reach out to our team at Frontline Health to join a class today!