The best way to help your baby if he chokes is to be prepared. Before your baby is born be...
The best way to help your baby if he chokes is to be prepared. Before your baby is born be sure to sign up for infant CPR and first aid classes. Courses are relatively quick, the skills are easy to learn, and class skills you learn can save your child's life in an emergency. If you haven't taken a class before your baby is born try to take one soon. As a quick primer, here's what to do if your baby is choking. How worried should you be?: Really not as much as you think. If you've baby proofed the house (nothing within reach that can fit through a toilet paper tube) and always watch your baby when he eats then odds are your baby won't be choking anytime soon. To add to that, babies have super strong gag reflexes and often when an item goes into your baby's mouth that shouldn't be there he'll cough it up. Still accidents happen and it's always best to be prepared. What does a baby choking look like?: If your baby is truly choking he won't be coughing anymore; instead he'll stop coughing, fall silent, and his face will turn purple or red. What to do: If someone else is with you have them call 911. 911 does need to be called in case you cannot get the item dislodged. Don't wait to see if you can do it first because you may not be able to. If no one is with you try to call 911 yourself while doing the following. Open your baby's mouth. If you can see something (say, a grape) then use your finger like a hook to get the object out. If you see nothing do not put your finger into his mouth because likely all you'll do is push the item further back. Back blows almost alway work for a choking baby. Turn him facedown on your forearm (he should be laying facedown). Give him four quick blows -- the blows should be between his shoulders not on his lower back. Use the palm of your hand. The blows should be hard enough to dislodge an item. This is not the time to worry about if you're hurting your baby. You probably will hurt him because smacks hurt. However, choking is far worse than the smack will be. After the item is out of your baby's mouth he may seem fine but it's important that you take him to the doctors anyway. Damage can be done to the throat when someone is choking so it's always best to have your baby checked out for possible injury.

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