Make sure you are able to help a choking baby
One of the scariest parts of becoming a new parent is the time just before a baby begins to crawl when you begin to consider the choking hazards in your home.
No matter how many precautions we take around the house. You will always be faced with the issue of being prepared to help a choking baby when this problem arises.
Knowing what to look for to recognize the signs of choking and understanding how best to help a choking baby are vital pieces of knowledge for all parents.
The signs of choking
It is impossible to help a choking baby if you cannot recognize the common signs facing you when your newborn or toddler has something lodged in their throat.
Firstly, you need to understand the difference between choking and having something trapped in the airway.
When a piece of food or a foreign object is trapped in your baby’s throat, it may not h8inder their ability to breathe but will cause problems if it is not removed quickly.
The basic signs of choking include:
- The face turning a blueish color
- Breathing problems with the chest drawing inward
- Inability to make a sound
- Difficulty coughing
- High-pitched sounds when inhaling
How to help a choking baby
When you recognize your baby or any baby you come into contact with is choking, it is important to act quickly to make sure no long-term damage is done to their health.
The first step to help a choking baby is to react as soon as you notice the infant is struggling to breathe or cannot make any sounds.
If your child is capable of making sounds and is not turning blue, a different set of actions should be taken with the aid of a medical professional.
The process of helping a choking baby
After you have recognized your baby is choking, you should spring into action quickly. Try to dislodge the trapped piece of food or foreign object.
The first move to make is to pick up your child. Place them face down on your forearm with the palm of your hand holding their chest. The fingers of the same hand can be used to provide support to the jaw and head.
Once your baby is positioned correctly, you can begin to help the choking baby. Find the center of their back between the shoulder blades. With the palm of your free hand, give five blows to the back of your baby between the shoulder blades.
This is often a difficult option to take. It can be difficult to provide the force needed to dislodge the item from the throat. Following the five blows to the back, your baby could spit out the item blocking their airway.
If there is no change in the way your baby is acting, you should quickly turn your baby over and begin the next step in relieving the choking problem you have identified.
If the first steps to relieving the choking of your baby have failed to achieve their goal. You should place your baby on your thigh or lap for support.
The next step is to focus the chest’s attention in a bid to create the movement needed to dislodge the blockage from the airway. With two fingers, you should find the center of the breastbone. Thrust downward to move the chest around one-third of the capacity it can decompress.
These five thrusts should be followed by turning the infant onto their chest and repeating the five blows to the back. At this point, you should have dislodged the blocked item from your baby’s windpipe. But you may still not have achieved your aim.
If your baby cannot remove the foreign object from their throat, you should continue these steps until your infant loses consciousness.
Move to CPR
Once you have begun to recognize the problem is more serious than you could have earlier imagined, you should check your baby for signs of losing consciousness.
If your child is no longer responsive, you should take the next step to help your infant. Once consciousness is lost, you should look for help for choking the baby by shouting for the assistance of anybody nearby.
If another person arrives, you should tell them to call the emergency services and ask for paramedic assistance. At this point, it is important to keep oxygen moving around the body of your baby with infant CPR.
How to administer infant CPR
Once you have tried to relieve the choking issues, you should constantly be checking for the consciousness of your baby.
If you cannot dislodge the item from your baby’s throat, your infant will lose consciousness at some point. This is a vital moment when you should attempt not to panic despite the problems you are now facing.
Raise your voice and shout to try and attract the attention of your baby. If your baby responds, you should return to the steps designed to dislodge the foreign object from your baby’s throat.
If you do not see any signs of recognition from your baby, you should leave behind attempts to help the choking baby. And, begin attempts to keep them alive while waiting for medical assistance.
Infant CPR is the best option when your baby loses consciousness. It should be completed for around one minute before you call for emergency help if you are alone. If you have assistance, ask the other person to call for help while you administer CPR.
Place one hand on the forehead of your baby. With your free hand, place two fingers in the center of the chest just below the nipples. At this point, you should push down about 1.5 inches hard and fast for 30 compressions.
Each compression should be followed by allowing the chest to return to its normal position as you count out loud to make sure you complete the correct amount of compressions.
Following each round of 30 compressions. You should give two rescue breaths to ensure you are giving your baby the best chance of survival. To give rescue breaths, you should leave one hand on the baby’s forehead and tilt their chin backward to open the airway.
Pinch the nose of your baby to create a tight seal and breath into their mouth twice. Many people only wish to provide rescue breaths and not complete compressions because of a sense of fear. If you feel this way, it is perfectly acceptable to do so.
Avoiding choking hazards
The best way to help a choking baby is to make sure the area around them is completely safe at all times. Among the many different choking hazards you should be aware of are:
- hot dogs
- latex balloons
- small toy parts
- pen caps
Most parents are told to baby-proof there home in the period just after your baby will begin to crawl.
Many parents choose to do this by getting down on the ground. Simply looking around to identify the many hazards which can be identified in this way.
The majority of choking problems are caused by foods that are not appropriate for your baby or which have not been prepared correctly.
If you are unsure of your ability to help a choking baby, you can look to assist in other ways by making sure all foods are chopped to no larger than one-third of an inch.
By doing this, you will find yourself confident that your child should be largely unaffected by the issues associated with choking.