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As the baby grows, he acquires the ability to move, turn, observe and put it all in your mouth. Any object within reach will increase the risk of choking from four months of age.
Pieces of food, parts of some toys that he can reach or objects given to him by other children in his environment can cause choking.
If, after a choking, the infant or child babbles, cries, talks or coughs, it is a sign that the air is passing through the airways, so we will probably be in a situation of partial obstruction. Coughing is the most powerful reflex mechanism capable of reversing this situation.
What should we do?
Stimulate and facilitate the coughing to continue to occur. Instinctively, sometimes, blows are made on the back with the intention of helping, but this should not be done because the foreign body can move and the partial obstruction can become total. So that avoid hitting the child on the back, compressing the abdomen and offering something to drink.
If there is no cough or it is clearly ineffective, we may be facing a total airway obstruction, that it will be necessary to differentiate if the child is conscious or unconscious.
The child is conscious:
- Call 911.
- Place the child standing and bending over, head lower than body. Run one hand under her armpits to hold her chest and with the other hand give her up to 5 strokes with the lower part of the palm of your hand on the upper part of your back between your shoulder blades.
- If you have not managed to expel the foreign body, you must start the abdominal thrusts or Heimlich maneuver, up to 5 times. This maneuver consists of standing behind the child and wrapping your arms around his waist. Close one hand and place the thumb knuckle above the navel, at the level of the pit of the stomach, between the navel and the thorax.
Take hold of your fist with the other hand and apply strong pressure inwards and upwards, which will cause an increase in pressure in the chest, forcing the air that remains inside the lungs to escape, dragging the foreign body. The maneuver should continue until help arrives or until loss of consciousness.
The child is unconscious:
Given the lack of knowledge, emergency help must be called immediately. While medical help arrives, he performs 30 chest compressions, followed by two breaths of air into the child's mouth while covering his nose until recovery.
- Call 911.
- Place the infant face down on the forearm, with the head lower than the body. Hold the infant's chin with your hand and place a finger on his lower lip so that the mouth remains open and feel for the foreign body to come out.
- With the other hand, give up to 5 blows to the back between the shoulder blades. If there is no expulsion of the foreign body, the infant must be turned over and placed on the forearm, facing upwards and supporting the neck with the hand. You can also place it on a hard surface. Apply up to 5 chest compressions with the fingers of the hand in a vertical position in the center of the chest, a little below an imaginary line drawn between the two nipples. - Repeats the entire cycle until recovery and until the arrival of help or loss of consciousness.
- The Heimlich maneuver is not an adequate technique to perform in an infant or younger than one year, due to the risk of causing injuries to the abdominal viscera. Before the arrival of medical personnel or the recovery of breathing, carry out 30 chest compressions followed by 2 mouth-mouth / nose insufflations, that is, covering the baby's mouth and nose with your mouth.
- When a resuscitation is performed in an airway obstruction by a foreign body, it is usual that the air does not enter, does not elevate the chest or it is very difficult to introduce it. In the event that the thorax rises easily, reassess the situation but, if the patient remains unconscious and does not breathe normally, you should continue with the maneuvers until the arrival of the paramedics.
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