Take the Prevention Promise During Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month

Learn what you can do to protect youth from this silent killer.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month

Stories are reported weekly, sometimes daily, about youth across the country stricken by sudden cardiac arrest. People mistakenly assume it's a rare occurrence that not much can be done to prevent. The truth is, sudden cardiac arrest in youth can be prevented if we take the time to be prepared.

October is Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month and Parent Heart Watch urges parents, schools, sports teams and any others working with youth to Take the Prevention Promise. With 1 in 3001 youth having a heart condition that puts them at risk for sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), which is the number one killer of student athletes² and the leading cause of death on school campuses³, getting educated is paramount in saving young lives.

• fainting
• chest pain or discomfort
• racing heartbeat
• dizziness or lightheadedness
• shortness of breath
• unusual fatigue
• family history of heart disease
• family history of unexpected or unexplained sudden death of an otherwise healthy family member under age 50

Take the Prevention Promise

• Know the warning signs of a heart condition and assess family heart history

• Teach kids to recognize these symptoms and speak up if they experience them

• Advise parents to complete well-child and pre-participation physical examination (PPE) forms with their kids

• Ask coaches, counselors or caregivers about any symptoms they see in your youth

• Consult a doctor immediately if symptoms or family risk factors are present

• Get an electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) screening for your youth every two years

• Learn hands-only CPR and the Cardiac Chain of Survival

• Install automated external defibrillators (AED) wherever youth congregate

• Implement a Cardiac Emergency Response Plan in your school, youth facility or on your team

Request free SCA awareness posters and flyers from Parent Heart Watch for your community

Find out more about how to prevent sudden cardiac arrest in youth at www.parentheartwatch.org/learnmore.

Parent Heart Watch is the national voice solely dedicated to protecting youth from sudden cardiac arrest and preventable sudden cardiac death. Parent Heart Watch leads and empowers others by sharing information, educating and advocating for change. Our vision is to eliminate preventable deaths and disabilities from sudden cardiac in youth by 2030.

¹  http://www.uwmedicine.org/uwmedicinehealth/Pages/prevent-cardiac-arrest.aspx

² Journal of Athletic Training 2017;52(4):000-000 Harmon et al
 DOI: 10.1161/Circulation AHA.115.015431

³ https://www.nata.org/sites/default/files/outcomessuddencardiacarrest.pdf

Source: Parent Heart Watch

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