Sausage – it has a skin that does not break down and tends to create a ball in the mouth (and sometimes the throat) I have experienced this first hand in a young 6 month old girl who was grey, limp and not breathing adequately. (This was the event that hatched the idea of the nest in the first place!) It was quick and terrifying, but thankfully she was ok after some swift first aid. If you are going to feed your child sausages, cut them into half moons.
Mandarins – much the same as sausages, they have a skin that forms a lump in the mouth and the skin is hard to break down. I would recommend cutting the segments in half at least.
Grapes – Again! That skin! Apart from that, they are the perfect size to lodge in a small child’s airway. There are many pictures online that show this but we are not here to scare you so we choose not to show them. we are here to teach you what to do if the situation arises. Cut your grapes into quarters so we get rid of that circular shape.
If a infant is choking or has a weaker cough or making a noise when breathing:
Call an ambulance and start choking first aid.
Lay the child over your lap face down and support their head in a neutral position. Give them 5 back blows, by giving them a short sharp blow to the back between the shoulder blades with the heel of your hand.
Between each back blow, tilt their head round gently to you so that you can have a quick check in the mouth. They could bring up the food/object at any time and you don’t want to continue giving back blows if they have the object in their mouth.
If you have given 5 back blows and they are still choking but breathing, follow the back blows with 5 chest thrust.
Turn them over on your lap so that they are facing you.
Choking vs Gagging
There is a big difference between these. You can read more over here on our blog about what it looks like when a child is gagging on food versus choking.
Use 2 fingers in the middle of the chest, between the nipples and give a short sharp push down, checking in the mouth briefly between each chest thrust.
After 5 chest thrusts, if the child is still choking but breathing, turn them over and repeat the 5 back blows.
Repeat the 5 back blows and 5 chest thrusts until the child has recovered or the ambulance arrives. If a child stops breathing normally or stops breathing at all, start CPR.
Baby first aid course
We focus on this particular subjects and technique in our baby first aid and CPR classes. It is the #1 worry for parents and caregivers and is also the most common incident, so we must be in the know!
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