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Understanding Differences Between Adult and Pediatric CPR

difference between adult and pediatric CPR

When it comes to saving lives, understanding the difference between adult and pediatric CPR is crucial. Adult CPR and pediatric CPR are similar but have important differences. Knowing these distinctions can make all the difference in an emergency.

At the American Healthcare Academy, we’re your online destination for CPR certification. Our user-friendly online courses cover various CPR techniques, including both adult and pediatric CPR. Whether you’re a healthcare professional, childcare provider, or anyone interested in learning life-saving skills, our courses provide the knowledge and confidence needed to act swiftly and effectively in critical situations. Join us on this journey of learning and empowerment to become a certified CPR pro.

What is CPR?

CPR, which stands for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, is a vital technique that helps save lives when someone’s heart stops beating or they can’t breathe. It involves doing chest compressions and giving rescue breaths to keep oxygen flowing to the body’s organs. 

CPR can happen in different places like homes, schools, and public areas. It’s not just for doctors. Anyone can learn CPR to be ready to help in an emergency. Doing CPR buys time until professional help arrives.

Read more: The Importance of CPR for Teachers: How to Prepare for Emergencies in the Classroom?

What is pediatric CPR?

Pediatric CPR is a life-saving technique designed specifically for children and infants. It’s a way to help when a child’s heart stops beating or they can’t breathe. In pediatric CPR, you use gentle but effective methods to give chest compressions and provide rescue breaths. This helps pump oxygen-rich blood to the child’s brain and other vital organs.

When a little one faces a medical emergency, knowing pediatric CPR can be the difference between life and danger. By learning this technique, you become equipped to respond confidently and save a child’s life in a critical situation.

The American Healthcare Academy offers online CPR certification, including pediatric CPR. Our courses provide easy-to-understand instructions, ensuring you’re prepared to act promptly and effectively whenever the need arises.

What is the age for pediatric CPR?

Pediatric CPR focuses on helping children who are infants up to about 12 years old. When a child’s age falls within this range, pediatric CPR techniques should be used. It’s important to adapt CPR to the child’s size and needs.

For babies under one-year-old, you’ll use specific methods like giving gentle breaths and using fingers for chest compressions. For kids aged one to 12, you’ll still use CPR, but the way you do it might be a bit different.

Learning pediatric CPR is essential, especially for parents, teachers, and healthcare professionals. It ensures you’re ready to act when a child needs help. Remember, getting trained in pediatric CPR means you’re ready to make a positive impact when it matters most.

Read more: Protect Two Lives at Once: CPR Preparedness During Pregnancy

What are the key differences between Adult CPR vs. Pediatric CPR?

Both adult cpr and pediatric CPR are crucial life-saving skills. Being aware of these differences allows you to respond appropriately and effectively in critical situations. Following are the key differences between adult CPR vs. pediatric CPR:

1. Strength of Compressions:

– Adult CPR: Compressions are deeper and harder due to the size and structure of an adult’s chest.

– Pediatric CPR: Compressions are shallower and gentler to avoid harming a child’s delicate chest.

2. Hand Placement:

– Adult CPR: Hands are placed on the center of the chest, between the nipples.

– Pediatric CPR: For infants, two fingers are used, and for children, one or two hands are placed on the breastbone.

3. Compression Rate:

– Adult CPR: Around 100-120 compressions per minute are recommended.

– Pediatric CPR: Similar rate for children, but for infants, it’s slightly faster, around 120-140 compressions per minute.

4. Rescue Breath Delivery:

– Adult CPR: Give breaths with more force to achieve chest rise.

– Pediatric CPR: Deliver gentle breaths, enough to see the chest rise, to avoid overinflating.

5. Compression-to-Breath Ratio:

– Adult CPR: Typically, 30 compressions to 2 breaths.

– Pediatric CPR: For single-rescuers, 30 compressions to 2 breaths for children, and 15:2 for infants.

6. AED Use:

– Adult CPR: Most AEDs have adult pads and settings.

– Pediatric CPR: Child-sized pads and settings are used for children.

7. Depth of Compressions:

– Adult CPR: Compressions are about 2-2.4 inches deep.

– Pediatric CPR: Compressions are about 1.5 inches deep for children and 1.0 inches for infants.

What is the compression depth for children? 

When it comes to life-saving variations in CPR, performing CPR on children is different. That’s why knowing the right compression depth is essential. The compression depth refers to how deep you should push down on the chest during chest compressions. For children, the recommended compression depth is about 2 inches or around 5 centimeters.

When you’re in a situation where a child needs CPR, remember to position yourself properly and use the heel of one hand to give compressions. Push down at the right depth, allowing the chest to rise fully before the next compression.

The American Healthcare Academy offers online CPR certification courses that cover proper compression depths for children and other essential CPR techniques for adults and kids. With our guidance, you can gain the confidence and skills needed to provide effective CPR to children in need.

Read more: Babysitter CPR Training to Handle Emergencies with Confidence

Will I learn adult and pediatric CPR in the online CPR course?

Absolutely! Our online CPR course covers both adult and pediatric CPR variations by age group. You’ll gain comprehensive knowledge and hands-on skills to confidently perform CPR on adults as well as children.

Throughout the course, you’ll understand the differences between adult and pediatric CPR. You’ll learn how to adjust your approach to provide the right care for different age groups. From chest compressions to rescue breaths, you’ll master the essential steps to help save lives.


At the American Healthcare Academy, we’re committed to providing you with a well-rounded education. By completing our online CPR course, you’ll be well-prepared to respond effectively to emergencies involving both adults and children, making a positive impact when it matters most.