A sad story from the BBC tonight, with the untimely death of a 9 month old child, after choking on some food at school.
Choking is one of the things we teach on every First Aid course, and to everybody who’ll listen; and with good reason. In just a few minutes, choking can lead to respiratory arrest and death, or be fully resolved by anyone with 10 minute’s worth of knowledge under their belt.
Minor chokes can be sorted with a good hard cough.
If the person can’t cough and is struggling to breath, give 5 firm blows between the shoulder blades.
If that doesn’t clear things, you need to use abdominal thrusts (in adults and children) or chest thrusts (in infants). Its a lot easier to see how it’s done than it is to read, so here’s the alarmingly cheerful Clive from St John Ambulance with advice for adults and babies