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Helping an Unconscious Person

Checking for Neck Injury

If an adult or any other person is unaware of their environment and is unable to respond to stimuli, then they are referred to as being unconscious. Such a state may be very dangerous and it would help if you have a CPR training online certification.

Unconsciousness can be caused by illness or injury and it is important to establish what caused it as well as to take measures to help the person. If you attained CPR online certification beforehand, you should be able to deal with this situation. Here are some steps to take to help an unconscious adult.

Ensure Safety

Before you can help the person, check to see if there is any danger in the area that the victim is. Whatever may have caused them to lose consciousness could have the same effect on you. It could be smoke, poisonous fumes, falling objects, slippery floor, or even traffic on a highway. Ensure you and the victim are not in harm’s way.

Try to Get a Response

Start by shouting to see if the person will respond, if you know their name, call their name as you shake them lightly on the shoulder. Sometimes a victim may not be able to respond but may still be able to hear, in such a case, assure them you are there to help and that they shall be fine. Do not panic. Keep them as calm as possible.

Assess Breathing

It is important that the person can breathe as that is vital to sustaining life. Start by ensuring that their airways are open. Let them lie on their back and then with one hand on the forehead and another with two fingers under the chin, tilt their head slightly backward to create a free flow of air. Be careful however not to cause any further injury especially if the person has been in an accident that may have caused bones to break.

Now you need to check if they are breathing. Observe the chest and see if it is moving, put your ear to their mouth and listen for any sounds of breathing and feel if there is air blowing onto your cheek while your ear is near the mouth.


If you confirm that the victim is breathing, then you need to place them in the recovery position as you wait for help to arrive. The recovery position is intended to keep them breathing freely without the danger of the tongue sliding into the throat or them choking on their saliva. Turn their head to the side and let it be supported by their palm. Use their other hand to support the body so that they do not rollback. Be mindful that by turning them into the recovery position you are not causing further injury.


If the victim is not breathing, the heart will stop eventually. Ensure the medical team is on the way and in the meantime start chest compression to get them to start breathing and if the heart has stopped, you may be able to restart it. Keep on doing the compression- 100 per minute, until they start to breathe or help arrives.