What is a CPR Face Shield and Mouthpiece?

CPR is a vital skill in saving lives that you should never hesitate to use during a medical emergency. However, despite its potential for resuscitating a person who’s lost consciousness, many people shy away from performing CPR in emergencies. The reason? They are concerned about close contact with the victim’s breath or saliva.

One study showed that a significant 59% of bystanders hesitated to administer CPR for this very reason. This concern has grown in the past few years, especially with the spread of COVID-19. But, there is a solution to this issue: CPR face shields and mouthpieces.

These tools create a barrier between you and the person you’re helping, reducing the risk of direct contact and making the process of saving a life a bit less daunting. Let’s see what is a CPR face shield and mouthpiece and how they can protect every party involved in a medical emergency that calls for CPR.

What are CPR Face Shields, and Why Use Them

A CPR face shield is a barrier you place between yourself and the person receiving CPR. Typically, it’s made of a thin plastic sheet and a one-way valve. The valve is the main feature because it lets your breath enter the person’s mouth and prevents their bodily fluids from getting back to you. It helps keep things clean and reduces the risk of transmitting infections.

What is the purpose of these devices during CPR? They preserve your safety and the safety of the person you’re trying to help. In situations where you’re required to perform CPR, you’re already in a high-stress scenario. The last thing you need is to worry about the transmission of diseases.

Even though the pandemic is over, Arizona still has 16,884 reported COVID-19 cases. These face shields allow rescuers to stay mindful of their health even when helping someone in medical need. They provide an added layer of protection, making it easier to decide and help.

How to Use a Face Shield

These devices aren’t anything complicated, and anybody can use them in just a few seconds. All you have to do is:

    • Make sure your hands are clean or you’re wearing gloves.

    • Open the packaging and unfold the face shield.

    • Identify the side with the valve.

    • Place the shield over the person’s face.

    • Position the valve directly over their mouth so the air goes into their airway.

    • Close the person’s nose shut, take a deep breath, and breathe into the mouthpiece. The valve should prevent any air or fluids from coming back towards you.

    • Give two breaths, then continue with chest compressions, following the standard CPR protocol.

Types of CPR Face Shields

When looking into CPR face shields, you’ll quickly find a variety to choose from, each with its own set of benefits depending on the situation. The foldable face shields are super convenient for those on the go. They’re compact and easy to carry around your pocket or first aid kit, making them a solid choice for everyday readiness.

There are also keychain face shields, which are pretty handy because you can attach them to your keys, ensuring you’re always prepared no matter where you are. They’re a bit smaller but still effective for providing barrier protection during CPR.

Those in more professional settings, like first responders or healthcare workers, probably have access to resuscitation masks. These are more durable and typically come with a one-way valve to prevent direct contact with bodily fluids, offering a higher level of protection.

Lastly, we’ve got the CPR face shield rolls. These are ideal for training or environments where you might need multiple face shields. They can be cut to size, and you’ve always got a fresh piece ready for the next training session or emergency.

What Are Mouthpieces

Mouthpieces are another simple yet effective tool that makes administering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation safer and more efficient. A mouthpiece is a barrier device placed between the rescuer and the person receiving CPR. It minimizes the direct contact between the two individuals, thereby reducing the risk of transmitting infections or diseases through bodily fluids.

While using a mouthpiece during CPR doesn’t necessarily improve the effectiveness of the rescue breaths, it removes any of the hesitation the rescuer might feel before starting CPR. This can be crucial in emergencies where even the slightest delay can decrease the victim’s chances of surviving.

How to Use Mouthpieces During CPR

Using a mouthpiece for CPR might sound technical, but it’s far from it. You don’t need a medical degree to figure it out. Just follow these few straightforward steps:

    • Ensure the person in need lies flat on their back on a firm surface.

    • Angle the person’s head back slightly to open their airway.

    • Place the mouthpiece securely over the person’s mouth.

    • If your mouthpiece includes a one-way valve, ensure it’s oriented correctly.

    • Pinch the person’s nose shut to prevent air from escaping.

    • Take a deep breath and seal your mouth over the mouthpiece.

    • Give a firm, steady breath over one second, checking if the person’s chest rises.

    • After two breaths, continue doing chest compressions.

    • Between cycles of compressions and rescue breaths, check for signs of life.

    • Continue CPR until professional help arrives or the person shows clear signs of recovery.

How to Pick the Right CPR Face Shield and Mouthpiece

Face shields and mouthpieces are there to make the process of CPR easier, not to get in your way. When considering which type to get, think about the size and how easy it is to use. You want to avoid fumbling with something complicated when seconds count.

A good face shield should fit snugly but comfortably over the person’s face, and the mouthpiece should allow for clear air passage without requiring you to apply too much pressure. You always need something lightweight and compact to have on hand, whether in your car, bag, or pocket.

How to Dispose of Used CPR Face Shields and Mouthpieces

Once you’ve used these two pieces of PPE, you must get rid of them properly. Never toss them into a regular trash bin. These items are considered medical waste because they’ve been in contact with bodily fluids.

Carefully place the used face shields and mouthpieces into a plastic bag. Seal it tightly to prevent any possible contaminants from escaping. If you’re in a professional setting, like a hospital or a clinic, there should be specific disposal bins for medical waste. Use these. If you’re out and about, call your local health department and ask where to dispose of medical waste safely. They might direct you to a nearby facility or provide other instructions.

The Best Protection: CPR Classes in Mesa, AZ

The answer to what is a CPR face shield and mouthpiece is straightforward. It’s a simple piece of PPE that makes performing CPR safer. It creates a barrier between you and the person in need, eliminating the possibility of coming in contact with bodily fluids.

Its simplicity and effectiveness can’t be overstated. It’s easy to use yet incredibly efficient in preventing direct contact with the victim’s mouth and nose. However, while these devices offer significant protection, their effectiveness can increase when used by someone trained in CPR.

So, if you want to learn how to use a CPR face shield and mouthpiece, invest in CPR classes in Mesa, AZ. This knowledge and the right tools could empower you to save a life confidently and safely.