We probably don’t think about it much, but choking is a serious problem. It is the number one cause of accidental death in young children and is responsible for about 3,000 adult deaths every year.
The most common sign someone is choking is the classic hands around the neck symbol. Some other possible symbols include an inability to talk, noisy breathing or difficulty breathing, trouble coughing, lips turning blue, or loss of consciousness.
Many of us know what to do when we see someone choking. It is recommended to bend the person over, perform 5 back blows, and then perform 5 thrusts with the Heimlich Maneuver.
But what should a person do if he or she is choking and alone?
Choking is scary enough, but choking alone can be downright terrifying. There is no one around to help, and breathing is impossible. This is the perfect situation for a person to panic, which will make the situation worse. So it is important to have a plan.
This is what you should do when you are choking and alone!
1. Don’t panic. Call 911. You won’t be able to say anything, but they will track your phone and send help.
2. Try to cough. Most obstructions are automatically removed by the body’s natural reflex to cough obstructions out.
3. If coughing doesn’t work, find a stationary object like a counter or a chair, put your hands together in a fist-like shape and use the stationary object to drive your hands into the area right above your navel. You can also try falling on the back of a chair. This may cause injury, so it is important to seek medical attention afterwards.
4. If you are pregnant, place your hands right underneath the breast bone and apply thrusts there. You can also slam back against the wall while trying to cough.
5. Keep at it until your airway is clear or help comes. Try to stay calm and conscious.
Another great way to remove an obstruction is to follow this technique laid out by Jeff Rehman, a firefighter and medic with 22 years of experience. In his video, he shows a person how to use their own body weight to stop choking.
1. Get into a lazy plank position with the knees and hands touching the ground.
2. Pull your arms up and forward and allow yourself to fall on your abdomen.
3. Keep going until the obstruction is dislodged.
Take a look at his video below. This is an excellent technique everyone should know!
Who is ready to save themselves from choking?
Share in the comments!
(h/t: Bright Side)