Parents are excited when their child is approved by their pediatrician for solid foods. They begin meal plans and are in awe of seeing their kid try something different than milk.
But, despite all the joys of this phase, the kid is at risk of choking. This risk only increases with the child growing more and more and eating more and more foods.
Parents, therefore, have ongoing worry and want to ensure their child doesn’t choke. Kids between the ages of one and five are also known to put other objects in their mouths besides food.
This is their way of exploring the world. Unfortunately, smaller stuff like beads, marbles, batteries can get stuck in the kid’s airways and lead to choking.
This is why it’s always best to keep all of these things away from their reach. In case your child or some other child begins coughing and choking, check out these tips so that you can help stop the choking.
Tips to Help a Choking Child
Remove the object if you see it, but never poke repeatedly if you can’t see it. This can worsen things and actually push the object further.
If they’re coughing loudly, keep on telling them to cough even more so that they can remove the object.
If the child is coughing silently and is unable to breathe, shout for help and check for consciousness.
If the kid is conscious, use back blows if they’re not coughing enough or if the coughing isn’t helping.
The 3-Step Protocol to Save a Choking Baby
How to do back blows for babies younger than a year
Sit down and lay the baby’s face down along your thighs and support their head using your hand.
Give them five sharp back blows using the heel of one hand.
Do it in the middle of their back between the shoulder blades.
How to do back blows for kids older than a year
Lay the child face down on the lap, as with a baby. If you can’t do this, support the kid in a forward-leaning position and make 5 back blows from behind.
If they don’t alleviate the choking and the kid is still conscious, begin to give them chest thrusts if they’re younger than a year or abdominal thrusts if they’re older than a year.
Chest thrusts for kids under 1 year
Lay the baby face-up along your thighs’ length.
Find their breastbone and put two fingers in the middle and then make five sharp pushes on the chest, compressing it by a third.
Abdominal thrusts for kids over 1 year
Kneel or stand behind the kid and wrap your arms under its arms and around its upper abdomen.
Clench the first and put it between the ribs and navel. Grasp one hand with the other hand and pull sharply inwards and upwards.
Repeat this movement up to five times. Don’t apply pressure on the lower ribcage. This can cause damage.
Have someone call the ambulance and never leave the child alone. Even when the object comes out, get to a doctor’s office ASAP because some of it may be left behind and to ensure the child is okay.
What If the Child Is Unconscious & Choking?
If the choking child is unconscious, place them on a flat and firm surface and call for help and the ambulance.
Put the phone on speakerphone and never leave the child. Open its mouth. If you can see the object and catch it, do it.