Halloween – Top tips for staying safe

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One of the most eagerly awaited nights of the year is on its way.

Most parents’ worry is that their child will eat too many sweets.

Stay safe at Halloween and remember to encourage children to be aware of choking risks. Don’t let your children run with sweets in their mouth, and remember to check any sweets or drinks before you allow your child to consume them, and don’t forget to check for any allergies.

Choking is extremely common and very frightening especially when it involves babies and young children. This can be either from food or small objects that they sometimes pick up and put in their mouths. However, knowing what to do in an emergency situation could make a real difference.

What to do for Choking:

  • The first thing you must do if a child is choking is encourage them to cough; as often they are able to clear the blockage themselves.
  • If the obstruction has not cleared, lean the child forward, supporting them on their chest with one hand. With the other hand, use the palm of your hand to give 5 firm back blows between the shoulder blades. Check between the back blows and stop if the obstruction has cleared.
  • If the obstruction has still not cleared after 5 back blows, the next step is to do abdominal thrusts. Stand or kneel behind the child, clench your hand into a fist and place it directly above their belly button, then place the palm of your other hand on top. Pull sharply inwards and upwards up to 5 times. Check between the abdominal thrusts and stop if the obstruction has cleared.

If the child is still choking, call 999/112 for an ambulance and return to the sequence of back blows and abdominal thrusts until emergency help arrives. If the child becomes unconscious, begin CPR.

Note – if you have performed abdominal thrusts on a casualty, they must be seen by a doctor.

Have a safe and happy Halloween.

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