Two-year-old Markus was eating some fruit for breakfast when he suddenly froze and looked at his dad in panic. Time seemed to stand still for author Mark Wilhelmsson as he watched his son helplessly, realizing his son was choking—and he didn’t know what to do.
Amazingly, young Markus was able to cough up the blockage and breathe normally, but as Wilhelmsson describes in his new book, Emergency: This Book Will Save Your Child’s Life, the experience set him on a course of investigating, learning, and compiling the top things every parent needs to know in a life-threatening situation.
As discussed with podcast host Benjamin Diaz, 8,000 early childhood deaths in the US—and 1,000,000 worldwide—each year are attributable to preventable accidental injuries, according to Safe Kids Worldwide. Now an American Red Cross Certified CPR, AED and First Aid Instructor, Wilhelmsson is on a mission to combat these statistics by educating the true first responders: parents. He writes on everything from busting newborn sleep-safety myths and preventing accidental drownings to home fire safety and—of course—how to rescue a choking child and perform CPR appropriately for a child’s age.
As Wilhelmsson reports in his new book, with average response times of ten minutes or more, 911 and local emergency response services are insufficient to provide life-saving care in the event of a child emergency. In a choking or drowning situation, Wilhelmsson writes, saving a child’s life comes down to a matter of seconds. It’s up to parents, then, to learn and provide the skills needed in those intense moments.
Wilhelmsson says, “As a Certified CPR, AED, and First Aid Instructor, I wanted to write the book that truly helps us deliver on the promise we inherently make as parents when deciding to bring a baby into this world: that we’ll do whatever it takes and commit to learning how to protect and keep them safe. I believe parents need to learn how to become self-reliant in emergency situations. They need to know how to save their own children’s lives.”
As the founder and president of Our Child’s Keeper (www.ourchildskeeper.com), Wilhelmsson’s instruction goes beyond the pages of the book, which provides links to on-demand video training guides and helpful resources from his organization.
While written for parents and caregivers of young children, the book is a resource sure to provide life-saving information for all members of the community.
Emergency: This Book Will Save Your Child’s Life is available from Amazon in hardcover, paperback, and ebook. Audiobook coming soon.