Choking occurs when food or an object becomes lodged in the airway of the throat. The object prevents air from getting into the lungs. Chocking can occur in mild or severe manners. All types of choking are serious. If a person has severe choking, act fast. You must get the object out of the person so they can breathe.
If the person is conscious ask “Are you okay?” If they are choking, or unable to speak, you should immediately treat the person. You will need to give thrusts slightly above the belly button (often referred to the Heimlich maneuver). Each thrust is intended to push air from the lungs up and out of the throat effectively removing the object.
Adult and Child Heimlich Maneuver:
Continue giving thrusts until the object is forced out and the person can breathe, cough or talk or until the person stops responding (becomes unconscious).
Many of the symptoms that indicate choking in an infant are the same as with adult and children. Recognize when an infant is choking from a mild airway block or severe airway block and act appropriately.
Infant Back Slaps & Chest Thrusts
Back slaps/chest thrusts shouldn’t be performed on an infant older than 1 year old. Give only back slaps and chest thrusts to an infant, pushing on the abdomen of the infant can cause serious harm.