Child Emergencies through Life

Prepare for the day that your baby, CHOKES!

Great Guest Post made on April 7, 2020 by Toddlermanual with no comment Parenting 101

Choking simply put is when something becomes lodged in your airway. It is also one of the most common causes of death in children. It is important to stay calm and know these steps to prevent a bad outcome!

What you need to be aware of:

IF YOUR BABY IS MAKING SOUNDS, you need to stand by and calmly reassure them that it is okay while the obstruction makes its descent to the stomach. Making sounds is a sign that the airway is not fully blocked! The natural gag & cough reflex will typically work in this situation to dislodge the blockage. I realize you want to panic. But don’t.

IF YOU PANIC. YOUR BABY WILL CERTAINLY PANIC!! A finger sweep is not recommended in this situation unless you can actually see and safely grasp the obstruction.


  • If your little one begins gasping for air (no more sounds are being made).
  • Your little one faints
  • Displays: the universal throat grab of “I’m choking’, wide eyes, open mouth with no sounds, drooling, panicky look
Universal choking sign

How to perform the Heimlich on a Child:

Over 1 year olds: Get on your knees, place child in front of you (their back to your stomach). Wrap your arms around their waist. Place one hand in a fist against their belly with the thumb side inward, (slightly above the belly button), place your other hand flat on top of your fist. Use a quick inward and upward motion. Do not touch the child’s breastbone, or you’ve pressed too hard. Continue this until the item is dislodged or the child loses consciousness.

Begin CPR if unconscious. Scream for help to call 911.

Under 1 years old: Begin by cradling the babies chin/face in your cupped palm & laying against your forearm and quickly give 5 quick & forceful back blows between babies shoulder blades with the heel of your hand. Turn baby over if item did not dislodge, and put two fingers in middle of sternum and give 5 chest compressions as you would during CPR. Continue these maneuvers until the item is dislodged or the child loses consciousness.

Begin CPR if unconscious. Steadily scream for help to call 911.

Continue throughout this process looking for an object in child’s mouth. NEVER DO A BLIND FINGER SWEEP. Only grab object if-you can see it.


10 Common Choking Culprits

  1. Hot dogs
  2. Nuts and seeds
  3. Chunks of meat or cheese
  4. Whole grapes
  5. Hard, gooey, or sticky candy
  6. Popcorn
  7. Chunks of peanut butter
  8. Raw vegetables
  9. gum
  10. Bread (especially pizza)

Are you trained in CPR? You can learn first aid, CPR & all life saving techniques HERE.

Love Deeply & Share if this helped inform you!