Choking Treatment For Infants and adults, that is one thing that we all need to know.
This article was written by Roy Shor-a former combat medic in the Israeli IDF, Roy has also worked as a paramedic for many years.
When someone is choking, it means that a foreign object got stuck in the person’s airways, keeping the person from breathing right.
In some cases, this can be a very dangerous situation, as the person can end up in the situation of not being able to breathe and die suffocated.
Choking can occur in the case of adults and children alike, so knowing How to provide first aid for choking is extremely useful. Adults usually chock on bits of food while children, besides food, can also choke on small items that they introduce in their mouths.
To know when a person is choking, you need to identify the signs of choking, as the person that is choking will not be able to speak.
Once you realize that a person is choking, you need to provide first aid immediately, as depriving the brain of oxygen, which is the result of choking, can make a person lose conscience and even his or her life.
The first sign that someone may have something stuck in the throat is the fact that the person’s hands are clutched on the throat. In this case, if the person cannot speak or react, check for additional choking signs.
These can be the impossibility to talk, difficulty in breathing or a breathing that is noisy or even squeaky, coughing that may be done forceful or, on the contrary, with a weak strength.
Other signs are dusky or blue lips, skin, or fingernails, as the body is slowly losing its oxygen reserve.
At first, the skin may appear flushed, due to the panic, but it will shortly turn pale and then bluish. In the worst case scenario, the person will lose his or her consciousness, as a result of being air-deprived.
In case the person that is choking can do this, even if it is in a forceful manner, then he or she should continue doing it, as the object blocking the airways can be released due to the forced motion. But if the person cannot talk, cough, or cry in a forced manner, then there are certain things you can do, as recommended by the Red Cross.
How To Provide First Aid for choking
You will have to start by apply 5 blows on the back of the person that is choking. Then, continue with 5 abdominal thrusts, also known as the Heimlich maneuver.
Repeat and alternate these techniques as mentioned previously, until the airways are cleared.
In order to perform abdominal thrusts, you need to stand behind the person, form a first with one of your hands, place it above the person’s navel, and grab your fist with the other hand.
Then, with your hands pressed this way, apply abdominal thrusts to the choking victim.
You can do this maneuver on yourself by using the back of a chair, which should be used for applying thrusts on your abdomen.
If you are the only person around the choking person, then immediately begin providing first aid than calling 911. It is essential to help the person breath right again before he or she becomes unconscious.
If there is another person around you, then ask that person to call 911 while you rush to help the victim.
Choking Treatment For Infants
What are the ways to prevent and reduce the risk of suffocation cases in children and infants, and what are the treatment methods and how to deal with such an emergency situation
Choking cases in children, infants and toddlers may occur for many different reasons, all of which involve blocking the airway to the lungs.
We will focus on the two most common causes – suffocation due to inhalation of a foreign body (also known as choking) and suffocation due to external pressure on the neck or obstruction of airways, nose or mouth.
These tips, although they are not a substitute for first aid and infant course, they can certainly help you avoid unnecessary disasters that can occur at home or outside.
Inhalation of a foreign body
All material, except air, that enters the windpipe of our body is a foreign body, which may block the airway and thus prevent airflow to the lungs.
Although the body has several defensive reflexes designed to protect the air passages (eg, swallowing reflex and cough reflex) but sometimes it happens and the body can not cope with the foreign body penetrated into the barrel and thus creates a barrier that prevents the passage of oxygen.
Small children tend to choke more than adults because their defensive reflexes are not developed enough, because their airways are narrower and they tend to test everything through the mouth.
When there is a blockage in the airways, loss of consciousness and cessation of the heart may occur quickly, followed by irreversible brain damage and death.
Ways of prevention
When serving food to small children, it is very important to pay attention to several things:
The shape of the food – Round dishes, accidentally inserted into the Trachea, “sit” exactly on the barrel and may block it. Therefore, one should use judgment and make sure to cut and adjust food that may endanger the child.
For example, bananas and sausages should be cut lengthwise into strips rather than into wide slices. Also have to cut grapes, olives and cherry tomatoes in a similar way.
Size – Foods that are too small or large may enter the nest and cause a disaster – so it is important not to let children under the age of five eat crackers, hard candy or too small, and to cut fruits and vegetables to the right size for eating.
Texture – A slippery dish (an orange slice, for example) that surprises the child, by coming quickly and without the control of the pharynx, may enter the Trachea without the child understanding what is going on. A liquid food texture can swell up your throat – so it’s best to avoid giving toddlers and small children pretzels or similar snacks that absorb water and swell quickly with saliva.
Games and toys
It is important to choose games for children that do not have small parts since there is a danger that the child will put them in his mouth.
For example, toy animal eyes should be embroidered and not sewn into a doll. Different assembly games should have large components.
It is very important to remove small balls and marbles from the child.
Be alert and aware of the dangers. Keep the child away from any small object that might endanger him, for example, coins, marker covers, leaves of potted plants, beads from Mother’s chain in particular and jewelry in general, sharp tools, pins, screws, tacks, nails etc.
Choking Treatment For Infants
If the child is conscious and coughing, it is good – this means that the body is trying to cope with the airway disturbance through the natural defense reflex. A cough is actually a strong burst of air designed to push the foreign body out of the windpipe.
If it is a small baby, you can hold it, with its head down from its body and the face faces down, and a pat on its back. This is suitable for a baby weighing up to 10 kilos (up to a year and a half on average), because above this weight, in practice, it is difficult to carry the baby safely.
If the foreign body has not been released, follow the instructions below:
For a child older than a year, the Heimlich maneuver must be performed. This maneuver is actually a pressure on the abdomen, slightly above the navel, and aims to imitate the coughing action by increasing the pressure on the chest cavity, so that the pressure will be released out in the form of strong air flow, that strong air flow can help and push the foreign body From his place.
The parent or caregiver must stand behind the suffocating toddler, surround him with his hands, put one fist on his stomach, above the navel, add the other hand and push upward. This maneuver must be performed 4-6 times.
If the foreign body does not come out, try to provide the child with 2-3 artificial respiration. The purpose of the respiration is to try to move the foreign body into the barrel. It may push in, into one of the lungs. But it will be mild and reversible damage relative to brain damage and death that may occur immediately and irreversible.
The Heimlich and the artificial respiration must be continued on and off.
It is important to note that in a baby under one year of age the Heimlich should be performed only with chest compressions designed to achieve the same goal without causing harm to the baby’s small body. The compressions are performed using the thumbs, in the line of the baby’s nipples.
If the baby loses consciousness, CPR should be started immediately, and after about two minutes call 911. (It is important to check periodically whether the foreign body is ejected). Open the baby’s mouth. If the foreign body is visible, try to pull it out. Do not try to remove a foreign body if you do not identify it with certainty – we may cause further damage by pushing the foreign body inside.
If you do not succeed, continue CPR.
Check the baby’s mouth – the foreign body may be pushed upward, if you notice it, try gently to pull it out.
If this has not yet worked, CPR should continue.
Before we finish, a number of safety rules for parents to help prevent unfortunate accidents:
Keep plastic materials out of the reach of children – Balloon scraps, a plastic bag, a plastic map are objects that are in every home and can endanger the child’s life.
Avoid wearing clothes with long laces that can be wrapped around his neck.
Remove curtains and toys with long laces from the child’s bed.
Finally, there is no substitute for close supervision and eye-opening.
Awareness of danger and attention will protect the lives and health of children.
“Choking Treatment For Infants and adults” does not come to replace a first aid and CPR courses,
you can check here for my recommended online first aid courses, they even offer a free Choking Treatment For Infants and adults video online course and much more life saving professional online courses.