A foreign body lodged in the windpipe or throat, which causes sudden cut of oxygen to the brain, causes choking. It is very necessary to attend to such a person immediately in order to save his life. It could cause symptoms like the person putting his fingers to his mouth to dislodge the foreign particle. Besides, one may find symptoms like difficulty in breathing, inability to talk, and the skin, nails and lips may turn blue. In severe causes, the person may also become unconscious.
The first thing that a person can do is to put his finger into the throat and try to dislodge the foreign body causing the choking. However one should take great care to make sure one does not push the particle further into the throat or windpipe.
In case of infants, it is best to be really prompt. One should sit down and place one’s arm on the thigh. Then he should place the infant in his forearm, face down. He should then press firmly on the infant’s back with one’s forearm at least five times. In most cases it should help to dislodge the foreign body. If this does not help, place the infant face up and try giving the same compressions on the infant’s chest. In most cases, one should be successful in helping the child to breathe normally again.
In adults and older children it is best to try to dislodge the foreign body by giving 5 blows with one’s fist. However if one is not successful, one could perform the abdominal thrusts. Standing behind the person and putting one’s arms around his/her waist is how you do it. Then it is best to place the arm in the navel region and push hard into the abdomen in an upward direction; the person’s abdomen should be pressed as if he is being lifted up. Repeat this a few more times.
When choking has made a person unconscious one should first lower the person on his/her back. One should try out all the methods one did to dislodge the foreign body taking care not to push it further inside the windpipe. In case it does not help, one can start giving cardiopulmonary resuscitation. This could help to dislodge the foreign body in extreme cases.
Hence it is better to be informed, so as be able to help anyone who chokes. It is best for one to be informed of all the steps, so one is in a better position to help anyone who needs help.