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What to do if a Baby is Choking?

What to do if a Baby is Choking?


3 minute read

Babies in their early growing stages have a tendency to put everything into their mouth, which makes them highly susceptible to choking.

Choking is a very serious condition, which can also lead to death. If your baby is able to cry and cough even when choking, just pat his/her back gently.

Here's what you should do if your baby is choking

In case he is unable to take make a sound (cry or cough) or breathe but is conscious, or is making odd noises and coughing very weakly, follow the instructions in the given order:

Give back blows

With your baby’s head below his/her body, place his/her face down along your forearm supporting his/her head and neck, and rest your hand on your thigh.

Using the heel of your hand, strike four to five firm back blows between his/her shoulder blades to dislodge the object.

Give chest thrusts

If he still is unable to make any sound, place your free hand on the back of the baby’s head giving support along the spine, and turn him/her over.

Support him/her on your thigh and keep his/her head lower than his/her body.

Keeping the pads of two to three fingers on his/her breastbone just below the nipples, push straight down on the chest ½ to 1 inch, then allow it to return to its normal position.

The thrusts should be smooth and not jerky. Continue this four to five times or until the baby is able to cough up the object.

Unconscious but breathing

Lay him/her on his/her back on the floor and perform a mouth check.

If you see the object on the tongue, take it out, or if it’s stuck in the throat, slip your little finger into his/her mouth to the base of his/her tongue.

If the object is visible, use a hooking action and carefully remove it.

Unconscious and not breathing

To check whether your baby is unconscious, tap his/her feet and shoulder lightly and call his/her name. If he doesn’t respond, call for emergency help.

In the meanwhile, gently tilt baby’s forehead, lift his/her chin and open his/her airway.

Check if he’s breathing by observing his/her chest movement, listening for sounds, or by feeling air on your cheek.

If not, give him/her rescue breaths by covering his/her nose and mouth with your mouth, and gently give him/her two slow breaths, making sure that your baby’s chest rises when you breathe into him/her and falls when you stop.

Do not give fast or hard breaths as baby’s lungs are small and may get damaged.

Follow by giving four to five back blows and chest thrusts. Repeat until baby starts to breathe or help arrives.


Check out the Baby Care section for more blog posts on baby's health, diet, and so on.

Explore the Himalaya Wellness blog for more useful articles.

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