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First aid: How to help a choking kid?
15 Mar 2022
First aid: How to help a choking kid? image

Choking is a common occurrence in children. Especially those aged 1 to 5, have a habit of putting things in their mouth. This is a natural phase of their growth. Don’t do anything if the kid is coughing and gagging but can still breathe and talk. However, if they are unable to breathe, you must intervene immediately to avoid a life-threatening situation.

Choking can be vital even in adults, in the case of children it is much more severe and needs special care. Your kid may choke on something, no matter how careful you are. So it is important to know how to help a choking kid with first aid. 

How to know if a child is choking?

There are a few signs that can help you to know if a child is choking and call the emergency number in your region to get paramedic support.

  • The child shows signs that he/she is not able to breathe because something is blocking the airway or has caused it to close off.
  • Turning blue in the face
  • Unconscious
  • Wheezing or gasping sounds from the child
  • Not able to talk, or make noise
  • Grabbing at the throat
  • Acting restless and panicked

Steps to help a choking kid

  1. Ask people nearby to call 911

Emergency paramedic support is important in these situations. Remember the earlier you contact them the earlier medical support arrives at the scene.

  1. If the child is unconscious start CPR

CPR should be started as soon as the child is moved to the floor. Only remove the thing from their mouth if you can see it. Learn how to do a CPR.

  1. Five back blows

Hit them in between shoulder blades. Back to back blows cause a lot of movement and pressure in the respiratory airway, which usually dislodges the obstruction. They will be able to breathe again once the blockage is removed. If back strikes fail to dislodge the object, go to the next step.

  1. Five abdominal thrusts

Make five abdominal thrusts (also known as the Heimlich maneuver). Pull inwards and upwards above the child’s belly button while holding the child’s waist.

Squeezing the air out of the lungs with abdominal thrusts may help to release the blockage.

  1. Perform back blows and abdominal thrusts

Continue the process until the airway is free. If you’re the only rescuer before dialing 911 or your local emergency number for assistance. If another person is nearby, have them contact for assistance while you provide first aid.

What are 3 common causes of choking?

  • Drinking water before or inbetween a meal
  • Trying to swallow large chunks of food that haven’t been properly chewed.
  • Wearing dentures
  • Intake of food while talking or laughing
  • Eating too fast
  • Food or things in the mouth while walking, playing or jogging.

Is it a good idea to pound a choking child on the back?

The most important thing to remember is that if your choking child is coughing, you should never pat or slap them on the back. Your actions may worsen the condition by dislodging the object and allowing it to enter the airway further.

How do you soothe a throat after choking?

  • If swallowing is difficult, drink plenty of liquids and eat soft meals until it passes.
  • Gargling with warm salt water will help relieve a sore throat. Spit out the solution. Don’t take it down.
  • Cough drops or hard candies can also be used to assist calm the throat. These should not be given to children under the age of four.

Seek help

Seek help from a medical expert near at the earliest. Their help can help the person from regaining his normal condition faster. 

 Also, make sure that you have called for emergency medical support the first time. For more help and support, contact us on 1800 889 2559.

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