New advice for parents on choking babies

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FIRST aid charities are issuing new advice to parents on what to do if their baby chokes after research showed many have no idea what action to take.

St John Ambulance, the British Red Cross and St Andrew’s First Aid have agreed a change to the technique for dealing with babies under one who are choking.

Previously, the advice was to place infants along the parent’s arm face down, but this is now changing to placing the baby face down along the thigh.

Experts say this position offers much more support for the baby while the parent or carer administers blows to the baby’s back.

The change in advice, to be officially announced on March 3, comes as a survey of 1,000 parents of under-fives found more a third (38 per cent) have seen their child choke.

Half of these parents admitted they did not know the correct procedure for helping their child, or ways to clear the obstruction.

The poll found only nine per cent of parents would
feel very confident administrating first aid if their child
or another youngster started choking. Some 16 per cent said they would not be confident at all.

Andrew New, speaking on behalf of all three charities, said: “Treating a child for choking is easy when you know how.”