Could you save a child? Essential first aid for babies and children.

It’s such a scary thought isn’t it, your child getting sick or needing medical help whilst their in your care? Over 60% of parents admit to their biggest fear being their child choking. I attended a ‘mini first aid’ course in Norwich a couple of weeks ago, it was a 2 hour session that covered all the essentials in baby and child first aid.

This information shouldn’t be a secret as it could really save a child’s life. I thoroughly recommend going to the sessions as they are great value, they give the opportunity to practice first aid plus they’re short and run by a medical professional. Click here to find a course near you and be sure to check out their Facebook page for up to date information. Here a few crucial tips I’ve learnt.


Something no one wants to have to do but knowing what to do could literally save a child’s life. First…

Check breathing – in first aid always check airways and breathing first.

Unresponsive? If Yes shout for help.

Open airways – tilt head/chin lift

Breathing normally for longer than 10 seconds? …If not Then call 999.

5 initial breaths

30 x chest compressions in centre of the chest

2 rescue breaths

30 x chest compressions

Continue until help arrives.


Probably the main reason I wanted to do the course in the first place, weaning a baby can be initially scary but it’s important you’re calm and relaxed for them. If you think your baby is choking ask yourself…

Do they have an effective cough? (Loud)

YesEncourage cough and continue to check

Noare they conscious?

If Yes – 5 back blows (check after each one)

5 thrusts (chest for baby/abdominal for child)

If No – open airway 5 breaths and start CPR call 999….continue until help arrives.

I like to remember this saying if they start to cough or struggle

loud and red let them go ahead – silent and blue they need help from you’

Bumps to the head

When babies and toddlers are exploring their new surroundings accidents are bound to happen. When your baby bumps their heads you may see bruising or swelling.

– get them to rest

– apply a cold compress to injury for at least 10 minutes

– monitor them ….if showing any of the following signs go to A & E.

1. Dizziness

2. Nausea & Sickness

3. Desire to sleep or drowsy

4. Slurred words

5. Confusion

*Any suspected skull damage call 999


As a baby I was involved in an accident which left me badly burnt but the faster and longer the burn is cooled the less impact of the injury.

– check for breathing

– stop the burning process

– remove rings and constricted clothing (you may need to cut it off)

– keep under running cold water for at LEAST 10 minutes.

– take care not to cool the whole patient

– cover in cling film to protect from infection (the hospital can see the burn this way too)

– call 999 if necessary


If a bone has broken you may see signs of pain, deformity, swelling, guarding, loss of use, tender, bruising, grafting.

– support the injury with cushions or items of clothing to prevent unnecessary movement

– call 999

– DO NOT press down on or push the bone

– DO NOT move the casualty unnecessarily

– DO NOT let the casualty eat or drink


– check if breathing

– sit casualty down

– quickly examine the wound

– apply direct pressure + elevate (use a clean nappy on wound if you have one)

– apply dressing

– if still bleeding call 999

Febrile, Convulsions, Seizures

Signs & Symptoms

– violent muscle twitching

– hot flushes skin

– twitching if the face

– breath holding

– loss of consciousness


– protect child with pillows and padding

– remove clothing

– ensure supply of fresh air

– sponge with tepid water head to toe

– check got breathing

– place baby in recovery position with head on side.

– call 999

I hope this has given you a little information and confidence on what to do in an emergency, please share ands we never know who or when we may need these valuable life skills.

also have look and see if Mini first aid run courses near you, it really could help you save a life.

8 thoughts on “Could you save a child? Essential first aid for babies and children.”

  1. I did a first aid course when my son was a few months old and found it invaluable. It was designed for parents and carers so was really useful. I was so glad I did it although thankfully, so far, I haven’t needed to use it.

  2. A child first aid course is definitely on my to do list, thank you for the reminder, I’ve heard lots of great things about Mini First Aid. I actually work for the ambulance service, although in a corporate role, so I definitely feel I should have some first aid awareness.

  3. I think everyone with a child should do a mini course. Thanks for doing this post, its really helpful. I’m a childminder so already have my first aid I wouldn’t have a clue otherwise.

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