First Aid - Choking

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• Choking – Conscious casualty – Signs and symptoms – History of cause of obstruction ie information; Unable to speak or cough; Redness to face; Eyes bulging; Grasping at throat. Treatment – Get the casualty to bend forward; Give up to 5 back slaps between the shoulder blades with the heal of the hand. This needs to be quite hard, as you have to move the diaphragm, but not so hard that you will injure the casualty (depends on size of casualty). Check the mouth in-between each slap for any debris.
• Give up to 5 abdominal thrusts – Place a clenched fist between the naval and the bottom of the breast bone; Pull inwards and upwards. Check the mouth in-between each thrust for any debris.
• This will more often than not be effective, if it is not, repeat the cycle of 5 back slaps and 5 abdominal thrusts until the obstruction clears or the casualty goes unconscious. If the back slaps and abdominal thrusts are not effective after 3 “cycles”, call 999 for an ambulance


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