Monthly Parenting Magazine

Get your first aid skills up to scratch

Get your first aid skills up to scratch

First aid tips for parents of children and babies

As a new survey reveals many parents aren’t up to date on their first aid skills, a new online course aims to educate us about prevention and treatment

A new study has revealed that parents don’t know as much about first aid as they might wish they did: almost a quarter of parents surveyed (22%) have admitted they do not have any baby or child First Aid knowledge.

The study, from parenting site, showed one in five (21%) mums and dads have been forced to give a child emergency first aid. But of these, under a third (31%) said they felt confident treating the child.

Overall the most frightening first aid scenario for parents is choking with 53% of mums and dads saying this is their biggest fear

The survey of 2,000 adults showed becoming a parent was by far the biggest trigger to wanting to improve first aid knowledge. The poll also revealed 84% of parents try to childproof their home to reduce the risk of accidents – but just 42% keep a first aid kit at home and only 15% keep up to date with latest first aid techniques.

As it turns out, spending just one minute a day learning first aid and minimising risks at home can cut the chance of your child having a serious accident or even ever needing treatment. The total is equivalent to just six hours in time over the course of 12 months.

As a result, and St John Ambulance have teamed up to produce a brand new video First Aid course watchable on all devices including mobiles, tablets and desktop PCs.

The free-to-watch seven-video series includes expert tips from TV GP Dr Dawn Harper and real-life experiences from top mummy vloggers Charlie O’Brien, Nilly Dahlia and Kate Murnane (Dolly BowBow). The videos, which include First Aid techniques and signs and symptoms of common illnesses, are available to watch here

Super useful tips on child and baby first aid – do you know the facts?


Always cut food lengthways not across
* Keep handbags out of reach – kids commonly choke on money and pen lids
* If your child is choking, never poke inside their mouth as this could push the blockage further down.
* Never leave a small child unattended


* Any burn bigger than your child’s palm needs urgent medical attention
* Put burns into cold water for at least ten minutes
* Cover in clingfilm to keep sterile before getting help
* Remove loose clothing but if clothes ‘stick’, leave them on until help arrives


* Have a supply of anti-histamines in your home First Aid kit
* Weaning? Be aware allergies can show up this early
* Rash? Treat it yourself with anti-histamines
* Swollen lips or tongue? Get to hospital


* Under 6 months? 38 degrees C is a fever
* Over 6 months? It’s 39 degrees C
* Never treat children with Aspirin – check the medicine label
* Child not getting better after 72 hours? Get medical attention fast

* Remember – ABC – Airways, Breathing, Circulation
* Start with 5 ‘rescue breaths’
* Then 30 compressions / 2 rescue breaths and repeat until help arrives or child breathes
* Use ‘Nelly the Elephant’ as your timing guide. At least 120 compressions a minute.

* Also called “febrile convulsions’. Most are caused by a fast-rising temperature
* If your child has one, place them gently on the floor and clear space around them
* If the seizure lasts more than 2 minutes, get medical help
* If your child has one without a temperature, get medical help


* Don’t wait for the rash – learn the other signs
* Meningitis symptoms include joint & limb pain, light sensitivity, blotchy pale skin, flu like illness and cold hands and feet. Babies may have a high-pitched cry
* Sepsis can happen from any infection – be aware
* Signs include no wet nappy for 12 hours, vomiting, convulsions, feeling cold, not feeding and hard to wake.

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