Heimlich Maneuver Instructions

What is The Heimlich maneuver

What is The Heimlich maneuveris an emergency technique for preventing suffocation when a person's airway (windpipe) becomes blocked by a piece of food or other object. The Heimlich maneuver can be used safely on both adults and children, but most experts do not recommend it for infants less than 1 year old. You can also perform the maneuver on yourself.

Perform the Heimlich Maneuver

Steps :

  1. Ask the choking person to stand if he or she is sitting.
  2. Place yourself slightly behind the standing victim.
  3. Reassure the victim that you know the Heimlich maneuver and are going to help.
  4. Place your arms around the victim's waist.
  5. Make a fist with one hand and place your thumb toward the victim, just above his or her belly button.
  6. Grab your fist with your other hand.
  7. Deliver five upward squeeze-thrusts into the abdomen.
  8. Make each squeeze-thrust strong enough to dislodge a foreign body.
  9. Understand that your thrusts make the diaphragm move air out of the victim's lungs, creating a kind of artificial cough.
  10. Keep a firm grip on the victim, since he or she can lose consciousness and fall to the ground if the Heimlich maneuver is not effective.
  11. Repeat the Heimlich maneuver until the foreign body is expelled.
Tips & Warnings
  • If a victim is coughing strongly or able to talk, let the person try to expel the foreign body using his or her own efforts.
  • If the choking victim displays a weak or ineffective cough, this indicates that air exchange is minimal and that you should start the Heimlich maneuver.
  • Teach your family the universal choking sign--clutching the throat. Encourage everyone you know to become familiar with this sign and use it when choking.
  • To avoid breaking bones, never place your hands on the victim's breastbone or lower rib cage when performing the Heimlich maneuver.
  • If choking persists, call 911 immediately. This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment.

Heimlich Maneuver on a Child

As long as your child is coughing and able to talk, give her the chance to dislodge the foreign body on her own. If your child becomes silent and isn't able to breathe, begin the Heimlich maneuver immediately.

Steps :
  1. Squat behind your child as she stands in front of you.

  2. Place one hand on top of the pelvis line, in the middle of the abdomen. Put your other hand on top of the first. Pull upward, forcefully, toward the child's nose, in a series of five quick thrusts. If that doesn't work:

  3. Place the child face down across your lap. Put one fist below the point where the ribs meet the breastbone.

  4. Give a solid whack to the back, between the lower shoulder blades, with your other hand.

  5. If the child begins to lose consciousness, lower her slowly to the floor. Be sure an emergency squad has been called.

  6. Straddle your child's thighs or sit at her side. Sit at her feet if she is very young.

  7. Put the heel of one hand at the belly button and thrust upward toward the nose five times. These motions are called abdominal thrusts.

  8. Open the child's mouth and look inside to see if you have dislodged the foreign body. If you see a foreign body, sweep it out with a hooked finger. Tilt your child's head to the side, in case of vomiting.

  9. Attempt to open the airway by tilting her head and lifting her chin. Look and listen for signs of breathing.

  10. Give your child a breath by pinching her nose with your fingers and putting your lips over her mouth to form a tight seal. Exhale forcefully into her mouth. Watch to see if her chest rises with your breath. If not, your child's airway is still blocked.

  11. Continue with abdominal thrusts.

Tips & Warnings
  • One study has shown that 85 percent of serious choking incidents in young children involve peanuts. Because of their size, peanuts often lodge in the tracheae of children under age 6.
  • Sweeping foreign objects from the mouth should be done with one hooked finger, which helps ensure you will not lodge the object in the throat.
  • If you are alone with a choking child and must dial 911, take the child with you to the telephone or bring the telephone to the child, so that you can perform the Heimlich maneuver as you are calling the emergency squad.

Heimlich Maneuver on an Unconscious Adult

HeimlichIf a person begins to choke and his or her airway becomes blocked, the Heimlich maneuver can save the victim's life, even if he or she is unconscious.

Steps :
  • Lay the choking victim prone, with his or her back against the floor. Straddle the choking victim's body directly above the knees.

  • Place the heel of one hand on top of your other hand. Intertwine the fingers of your top hand with the fingers of your bottom hand.
  • Keep your bottom hand (the one pressing against the victim) open, palm-side against the victim.

  • Position your hands in the middle of the victim's torso, between the belly button and breastbone.

  • Administer a series of five firm upward thrusts. Do not thrust straight downward or you may cause injury to the aorta.
  • Open the airway by grasping the victim's tongue and lower jaw, and look inside the mouth for any sign of a dislodged foreign body. See something? Use your index finger to sweep it out.

  • Listen for breathing. Watch for the chest to rise and fall. Look carefully, as the victim's breaths may be shallow

  • Pinch the nostrils closed and place your mouth over the victim's mouth.

  • Breathe into the mouth and watch to see if chest rises and falls. If it doesn't, the airway is still blocked.
  • Repeat the abdominal thrusts if you can't hear breathing or see chest movement.
Tips & Warnings
  • If no one is around to help, it's difficult to know when to leave the unconscious victim to call 911. When in doubt, call 911 first, but return to the victim as quickly as you can.
  • If you're successful in dislodging a foreign body from a choking victim's airway and the victim begins breathing unassisted, carefully roll the person onto his or her side. This way, if the victim should start to throw up, the vomit won't cause more choking.
  • If you have specific medical conditions or concerns, we recommend you contact a physician. This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment.
Heimlich Maneuver on Your Self

If you live by yourself, a self heimlich might just save your life. This is a refresher and not meant to instruct you as a teacher of the heimlich maneuver. Doing this correctly will save a life, maybe your own.

Steps :
  1. Living alone, one must be pretty self sufficient in many facets of living. There are teachers who instruct and are trained to guide you to be able to do the heimlich maneuver on others and yourself too. Please take advantage of those courses. This is a refresher only, which is always suggested to review every year the skills to dislodge something from the throat. Maybe it can save your life if you live by yourself. After you have taken the course in the Heimlich maneuver, you know you have to be able to detect if you can talk. If you can talk, you can breathe.

  2. If there is something caught in your throat that prevents you from saying anything, you need to act fast. Do not panic! Do not waste time. Act quickly to find a straight back chair and sit down. If you cannot find a chair, a wall will do just fine. Put your back on the firm surface of the wall or straight back chair. If you will be using the wall, you might be lowering yourself to the floor, but do not do that initially. You need the room to place your hands appropriately to do the self Heimlich.

  3. Make a fist with one hand and cover that fist with the other. Your thumb of one hand will be tucked into the fist of the other hand. The other thumb will be on top of the doubled fist. Practice this as you are reading, so it will come naturally for you if and when you need to use it.

  4. Find your sternum or breast bone. That is the firm bone in the center of your chest. This bone has the ribs attached. The end of the ribs are lower than the sternum. Go to the end of the sternum and you will feel a softness without any bone. You are in the right spot to put that thumb that is on top of your two fisted hand clasp.

  5. You are going to push inward and upward to force air from the lungs to bring that object or piece of food out of your throat or windpipe. You will continue to do that thrusting motion until you are successful. Use five forceful thrusting movements at a time and rest momentarily only seconds before resuming. The food particle will be expelled. Put your head to the side so you can vomit away from your working hands and not hinder them with slippery stomach contents.

  6. As soon as you can talk. Lay down with your head elevated slightly to relax. If you are feeling faint, put your head down flat with your head to one side just in case you vomit again. You should see a doctor or health care professional afterwards to make sure all is well with you following your self Heimlich maneuver.

  7. Right now the American Red Cross has down graded this technique by using back blows and then abdominal thrusts. When you are by yourself, you won't be able to do the back blows, so that is why they are not mentioned above.

  8. It is also possible to lunge over the back of a chair to force a thrusting action to simulate the Heimlich maneuver. This is successful and can be chosen instead of the double fisted technique described above.

Tips & Warnings
  • I am a woman who lives alone. I am not a doctor nor am I a trained technician to teach you the Heimlich maneuver. You can only use this as a reference from a concerned person willing to share this information. Please sign up for a Heimlich class every year to save non only your life, but your loved ones possibly one day if they need it.

Video about Heimlich Maneuver :

[source : www.ehow.com]

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