Hands clutched to the throat is a universal sign of choking. Choking happens when a foreign object lodges in the throat or windpipe, preventing the flow of oxygen. Since choking cuts the brain’s oxygen, give first aid treatment as soon as possible.
Before administering first aid treatment for choking, its always wise to check the surroundings and practice first aid primary survey.
Table of Contents
Determine whether the airway obstruction is partial or complete; this will allow you to determine what you should do to assist. If the person who is choking can still speak, cough, or cry out, this indicates that the airway obstruction is only partial. Although the person can still breathe, he or she may become pale because breathing is obviously restricted.
When the airway is completely blocked, the person will be unable to respond to your cough or breathe. The victim will most likely start grabbing at their throat, and their fingernails and lips will turn blue. This is all due to a complete lack of oxygen.
If the blockage is only partial, instruct the person to cough. Coughing is the most efficient method of clearing the Airways and pushing the stuck piece of food out of the trachea. In this situation, the best thing you can do is calm the person down, reassure them that everything will be fine, and encourage them to cough.
When some people are choking, they attempt to suppress a cough, straighten out their backs, and breathe through their nose, which is the wrong thing to do. This is the very worst thing you could possibly do in this situation. It’s not a good idea to drink something while choking. Once the victim’s throat is clear, give them a glass of water.
If the victim is unable to cough, the correct course of action is to stand behind them and lean forward. For support, you can use your knee or the back of the chair. Use the heel of your hand to deliver up to five powerful blows between the shoulder blades. Make certain that the blows are directed upwards toward the victim’s mouth.
Instead of the usual horizontal claps After each hit, pause to see if it succeeded. This should aid in the removal of the lodged object from the airway.
Never administer blows to a person who is standing straight up, and never use your fists. This will only cause the piece of food to fall further down and clog the Airways. Stop slapping their back if they start coughing.
The goal of the Heimlich maneuver is to push out any air in the lungs that isn’t being used by breathing, which effectively drives out the stuck object.
Standing behind the victim and wrapping your arms around their torso is the proper thing to do. Make a fist with one hand and place it on their stomach between the bellybutton and the lower ribs. Then, with your other hand, make a fist. Now, thrust your fist several times up toward the victim’s diaphragm. Continue doing so until the airway has been cleared.
Slapping the victim on the back is the wrong thing to do; it will only make matters worse. Also, make sure your arms aren’t wrapped around the person’s ribs, or you risk breaking them. Instead, your arms should be below your ribs.
If the victim has passed out, the proper procedure is to place them on their back. Face them and lean on their hips. Place the base of your palm between their belly button and lower ribs, and place one of your hands on top of the other. Pressure the abdomen hard against the diaphragm and repeat until the airway is clear. It’s time to start CPR if the person doesn’t start breathing after the object is removed.
Keeping the victim in an upright position is the wrong thing to do. It’s also a bad idea to start CPR before the blockage in the trachea is removed.
You can save your own life if you’re coughing and about to suffocate and no one is around to help. Start coughing, and if that doesn’t help, perform the Heimlich maneuver on yourself. Make a fist and hit your belly button in the area between your belly button and lower ribs to accomplish this.
Raise and lower your fist in a J-shaped motion. If that doesn’t work, bend over a chair, the corner of a table, or any other solid object at waist level and push as hard as you can, keeping your arms stretched out in front of you, until the object is dislodged.
Try not to panic if anything goes wrong, as unlikely as it might be. The more panicked you get, the more air you let into your lungs through your mouth. The trapped piece of food would be pushed further in by the incoming air. Do not stand up straight or strike your chest or back.
To assist people such as pregnant women or obese individuals The Heimlich maneuver must be slightly modified. Place your hands as close to the abdomen as possible, but not higher than the abdomen. Your hands should be placed directly above the victim’s lower ribs. You won’t be able to do regular upward thrusts, so instead, press the chest really hard with quick thrusts. Repeat this procedure until the person is no longer choking. However, if they become unconscious, stop.
What to do if your baby is choking
If the victim is under the age of a year, place them face down on your forearm. Make sure your head and neck are lower than your torso and that your chin is supported in your palm. Make five swift blows with the heel of your hand between the infant’s shoulder blades.
Turn the baby on its back if that doesn’t help get the trapped object out. Help the head and neck with your side, which should be lower than the torso. Make five short thrusts on the breastbone with two fingers. Stop and let the baby cough up the item if it begins coughing.
If the victim is older than a year, you must obey a different set of rules in order to save them… If the child is young, get down on your knees and stand behind them. Encircle the child’s waist with your arms. Make a fist with one hand and put it between the ribs and bellybutton, thumb upwards. On the other hand, grip your palm. With swift inward and upward thrusts, move your elbows to the sides and press the child’s stomach.
Try laying the baby or child on their back first if they are unconscious. Raise the chin and tip the head back. If you see an object lodged in the back of your throat, clear it with your fingertips. If you’ve successfully extracted the item, put your mouth over the child’s mouth and nose and blow into their lungs.
Check to see if the chest has begun to move and listen for breathing. Start chest compressions if the child is still not breathing or if you were unable to dislodge the object from the start. Remember that two fingers pushed over the breastbone would suffice for small children. Start by doing five compressions and one breath in a row. If you haven’t already, call 999/112 and continue with CPR until they arrive.
First Aid Treatment for Choking Summary;
At Medswift Training we are experienced in a wide range of First Aid Training in Kenya. Moreover, we are also flexible in how we offer our training. You can have it in our offices or at your own premises, at home, school or church, all at a great price.Train With Us