Independent Medical Solutions believe that everyone should know how to react in case of any emergency, choking first aid advice we will be the subject for this months guide. One of the most successful skills in first aid is the treatment of a casualty who is choking.
Objects such as food, sweets, or small objects can easily become lodged in the airway if they are accidentally ‘breathed in’ rather than swallowed.
Possible Signs and Symptoms of choking
The easiest way to recognise choking is to ask the casualty ‘are you choking?’
Other signs include.
The casualty is unable to speak or cough.
Grasping at or pointing to the throat.
Distressed look on the face.
Congestion and reddening to the face initially.
Pale skin and cyanosis (blueness the skin) in later stages.
Unconsciousness in later stages.
Choking First Aid Treatment for an Adult or Child over the age of one.
Encourage the casualty to cough. If the choking is mild, this will clear the obstruction and the casualty should be able to speak to you.
If the obstruction is not cleared:
Shout for help
Bend casualty forwards so the head is lower than the chest. For children you can place them over your knee.
Give up to five firm back blows between the shoulder blades with the palm of the hand. Check between blows and stop if you have cleared the obstruction.
If the obstruction is still not cleared:
Stand behind the casualty kneel behind a child. Place both your hands around their waist.
Make a fist with one hand and place it just above the belly button (below the ribs) with the thumb inwards. Grasp the fist with your other hand, then pull sharply inwards and upwards. Do this up to 5 times. Again check between thrusts and stop if you have cleared the obstruction.
Repeat steps 1 and 2
If the treatment seems ineffective shout for help ask someone to call 999 / 112 for emergency help.