Every year, over 350,000 cardiac arrests (cessation of heartbeat) occur outside of a hospital setting. Of all these cardiac arrests, 27.5 percent occur in a home or residence.
If someone suffers a cardiac arrest, they need to be resuscitated within two minutes or less. Otherwise, their risk of brain damage or death increases dramatically.
If you have a family member who suffers from a heart condition or is in generally poor health, you may want to consider investing in a home defibrillator. A defibrillator is a tool that shocks the heart and restores a normal heartbeat.
Read on to learn more about why you might want to consider buying a home defibrillator.
Benefits of a Home Defibrillator
There are many reasons why a home defibrillator is a great investment. The following are some of the greatest benefits that come with purchasing one:
Being prepared isn’t just for the Boy Scouts. It’s for anyone who wants to feel calm and confident when faced with a crisis.
If you have a defibrillator on hand, you will be prepared to handle any medical emergencies that arise in your home.
If you live with an elderly relative or anyone who suffers from heart disease or other health issues, a defibrillator may be a good tool to purchase.
Remember, you only have a couple of minutes after a person suffers a cardiac arrest to restore their heartbeat. If you wait for an ambulance to arrive, it could be too late.
Having a defibrillator on hand allows you to take immediate action. That way, when the ambulance does arrive, they can get your loved one to the hospital much sooner.
Reduce Risk of Brain Damage
The sooner you resuscitate an individual who has suffered a cardiac arrest, the less likely they are to suffer permanent brain damage.
Their chances of making a full recovery increase dramatically when they’re resuscitated with a defibrillator.
Easy to Use
Home defibrillators are very easy to use.
In most cases, once you turn the device on, you will receive audible instructions on how to place the pads, administer a shock, and care for your loved one.
Most defibrillators deliver this information in more than one language, too, so you can use it even if you’re not a native English speaker.
Peace of Mind
Finally, a home defibrillator gives you peace of mind.
Even if you never have to use it, it’s nice knowing that, should something happen to your loved one while they’re at home, you have the tools necessary to help them.
You definitely can’t put a price on that.
How to Choose the Right Defibrillator
Clearly, are benefits that come with purchasing a home defibrillator.
They are a big investment, though, and they usually aren’t covered by insurance. If you’re considering purchasing one, it’s important to first do your research and learn the details of specific models.
Here are some questions you should ask yourself when you’re shopping for a defibrillator:
Where Will I Store it?
The first thing you need to think about when shopping for a defibrillator is where you will store it.
How much room do you have for a defibrillator? Will you keep it in a cabinet? A wall mounted case?
When considering storage for a defibrillator, remember that it’s best to keep them out of direct sunlight and away from water.
You should never keep a defibrillator in a locked cabinet, but you should also make sure that it’s stored somewhere out of the reach of children.
Who Will Use it?
Think about everyone in your home who may use the defibrillator.
Will it just be you? Your older children? A parent?
Make sure you buy a device that all of these people can comfortably use.
Will a Child Need it?
Is there a possibility that you may need to use the defibrillator to resuscitate a child?
If so, make sure that you purchase one that comes with child-sized pads. This will prevent them from getting too much of a shock.
What’s My Budget?
Of course, you also need to think about your price range. How much can you afford to spend on a defibrillator? On the low end, these devices usually cost around $1,000.
What Features Do I Need?
Finally, think about the features you want your defibrillator to have.
Do you want a device that saves medical data and transfers it to your computer or the hospital where your loved one will be sent? Do you want it to be dust or water resistant?
Be sure to consider the warranty on a defibrillator before you purchase it, too. Look for one that is guaranteed for 5-10 years, at least.
Learn to Use a Defibrillator
If you’re going to invest in a defibrillator for your home, you ought to feel comfortable using it.
It’s true that most defibrillators come with easy-to-follow instructions. At the same time, though, it’s still a good idea to practice using one. That way, you’ll feel confident and won’t be second-guessing yourself should you ever need to resuscitate someone.
Most people only take first aid classes as part of their personal training certification or for another job requirement. Everyone needs to understand these skills, though.
Sign up for a first aid class in your area so you can learn to use a defibrillator correctly. You’ll also learn other important first aid techniques like bandage application and how to support someone after they’ve had a seizure.
Looking for More Health and Safety Advice?
Now that you know more about the benefits of purchasing a home defibrillator, do you think you need to buy one for yourself or a loved one?
If so, keep this information in mind so you can choose the best one for your (or their) needs.
Do you want to learn about other important health and safety practices? If so, be sure to visit the Health section of our website today.
You’ll find lots of helpful articles here on senior care, choosing the right doctor, and more.