We have a guest post from Emma Hammett at First Aid for Life, that every parent of a baby should read…
Seeing someone choking is really frightening and when your baby appears to be choking it can be petrifying!
Babies love to put things in their mouths and anything small enough to fit through a loo roll can be a potential choking hazard for a little one. When starting solids; avoid slicing food into perfect circles as these could block the airway completely if they were to get stuck.
Babies have a very sensitive gag reflex and often appear to struggle when trying new food textures and this can be really alarming. Most of the time they are able to clear the obstruction themselves. However supporting them and repositioning them with their head lower than their body can help. If they are able to cough, let them try and dislodge the obstruction themselves – if they are quiet and struggling to breathe, help immediately.
Choking – how to help
- Stay as calm as you can.
- If they are able to cough, reposition them to see if they can clear it themselves.
- Have a quick look in the baby’s mouth and carefully remove anything obvious. NEVER blindly sweep inside the baby’s mouth with your fingers as it can cause damage and push the obstruction further down.
- Lay the baby downwards across your forearm, supporting under their chin.
- With your hand hit the baby up to 5 times firmly between their shoulder blades
- Check after each back blow to see if the obstruction has cleared
- If still choking; lay the baby on its back across your knees, head downwards. Place two fingers in the centre of their chest at the nipple line, and give up to five, firm upward chest thrussets
- If the baby is still choking, call 999/112 and continue giving baby five back blows, alternated with five chest thrussets, until help arrives
Written by Emma Hammett for First Aid for Life and www.onlinefirstaid.com
It is strongly advised that you complete an online or attend a Practical First Aid course to understand what to do in a medical emergency. Please visit www.firstaidforlife.org.uk or call 0208 675 4036 for more information about our courses.
First Aid for life provides this information for guidance and it is not in any way a substitute for medical advice. First Aid for Life is not responsible or liable for any diagnosis made, or actions taken based on this information.
- If the baby becomes unconscious start CPR immediately.
Emma has kindly offered all Mama Designs customers and fans a discount code offering 50% off her online courses. Use code mama designs.