CPR is one of the most important life saving methods that everyone should learn. The procedure greatly increases the odds of a heart attack victim surviving the ordeal. However, the stress and gravity of the situation makes people panic and cause basic mistakes.

When it comes to performing life saving skills, you can’t afford to make any mistake. A simple mistake can result in loss of life of an individual. Here, we have listed some of the common mistakes that people make when performing CPR.

1. Not Applying Adequate Pressure

One of the most common mistakes when performing CPR is not applying adequate pressure. Failing to properly perform compressions can cost the life a heart attack victim. This mistake is generally committed due to the fear of hurting the victim. However, remember that it’s a life you’re saving. Make sure that you apply the right pressure — about 100 to 120 compressions in a minute — to ensure proper blood flow keeping the person alive.

2. Bending the Fingers

Another common mistake that rescuers make when performing CPR is bending the fingers when applying pressure. This also results in ineffective circulation of blood inside the body. The fingers should always be interlaced or extended on the chest of the victim. Bending the fingers make them point downwards, which produces a massaging action instead of a compressing one.

3. Criss-Crossing the Hands

Another common mistake is criss-crossing or double-crossing the hands when carrying on CPR. This mistake is usually made due to the wrong presumption that it will maximize the compression. In fact, the opposite happens due to which the victim’s body does not receive adequate oxygen.  The hands of the rescuer should be straight over the other for maximum force of compressions.

4. Forgetting Your Safety

Keep in mind that you should not compromise your own safety when helping others. You should always assess your situation before performing CPR. Evaluating the situation involves making sure that the area is safe before beginning CPR. Assessing the situation is especially important in case of drowning, electrocution, and natural disasters.

5. Not Calling Emergency Services

A lot of people have the presumption that CPR on its own can help revive a person. The reality is that CPR helps in keeping a person alive until medical help arrives. The resuscitation technique will not work for extended periods of time. At most, continuous CPR will be able to keep the victim alive for six hours. However, most people tend to get exhausted after an hour or two of performing the life saving technique. So, you or someone close by should immediately contact medical help while helping the victim.

CPR is a process that requires you to follow specific instructions. If you don’t follow all the instructions, you can do more harm than good. Make sure that you carefully read all the instructions provided in a CPR first aid certification class. You must follow the instructions by the letter without making any mistake.