From an early age, babies love to explore new objects with their mouths. They do this for a number of reasons such as to examine new tastes or textures, or to help little teeth emerge. Furthermore, if they are teething they may reach for something to soothe the pain of sore gums.
You will know if your baby is choking if they are unable to cough, cry or breathe.
In this case you should follow these steps:
- Check the mouth for the object – if you can confidently pick it out with your fingertips then do so, but take great care not to push it in further.
- Sit down and lay your baby face down along your thigh supporting their head.
- Give up to five sharp blows between their shoulder blades with the heel of you hand.
- If the back blows do not clear the blockage, give up to five chest thrusts.
- Lay your baby face up along the length of your thigh, put two fingers just below the centre of the chest and push inwards up to five times.
- Check their mouth regularly and remove the object if possible.
- If choking persists, repeat back blows and chest thrusts until you dislodge the object and they can breathe
Further tips to prevent choking:
- Always supervise your baby/toddler when eating. Lots of parents give their children snacks in the backseat of the car, but they aren’t in view. Choking is often silent so it might take a while for the parent/carer to notice.
- Keep small objects out of their hands. One of the most common dangerous objects that often falls in to the wrong hands are button batteries, which are found in lots of toys.
- Always make sure your child is sat up right whilst eating and drinking.
Daisy First Aid was founded in 2014 by former police officer Jenni Dunman, who experienced a vast number of first aid emergencies during her time in the force. The idea to launch Daisy First Aid came when her friend’s daughter began to choke on a cookie. Thankfully, as an advanced first aider, Jenni knew exactly what to do and she quickly stepped in to successfully remove the blockage, and the little girl recovered with no injuries. It was then that Jenni realised first aid was not something that was typically offered to new parents, and many might not be aware of the basic skills needed to safely save their child’s life. In just four years Jenni has grown her business into a multi award-winning company (with franchises across the UK) and is a leading paediatric first aid expert in the UK. She dedicates a great deal of time volunteering at national charity events and has a huge celebrity client portfolio including Russell Brand, Christine Lampard and Rochelle and Marvin Humes.