First Aid for Your Child: Choking


First Aid for Your Child: Choking


First Aid for Your Child: Choking




Choking can occur as a result of food mistakenly getting caught in the throat or wind pipe, or in young children as a result of any small object they may put in their mouths. The coughing reflex will usually solve the problem. If it doesn’t, you will have to help the child remove the food/object.




•Inability to speak


•Gasping or wheezing


•Purple or blue skin color


•Bulging eyes



What to Do


•Attempt to remove the food/object from  the child’s mouth with your fingers


•Bend the child so his head is lower than  his chest. Slap him between his shoulder blades – repeat 4 times


•For school-aged children, stand behind the child, make your hand into a fist, and put it on his abdomen (above his belly button). Grasp your fisted hand with your other hand, then pull strongly and direct inwards and upwards. Repeat 4 times or until the object is expelled from the airway.


Read also in the First Aid for Your Child series: Allergic Reactions, Burns, Bleeding, Electric Shock, Tooth Loss, Motion Sickness, Heat ExhaustionFever and Eye Injury.