June 4, 2012

Infant Heimlich Saved Our Daughter

We had another terrifying moment with our daughter last night. I've said it before and I'll say it again...she's going make me go gray way too young.

We had a pretty busy day...a 30 day post-deployment yellow ribbon event (scheduled two and a half months after they returned because that's just how the Army works) aka death by power point, which meant that the girl was up for almost 13 hours straight because she refused to nap while in her class all day. She also didn't nurse much (she's been on a bit of a nursing strike) and barely ate while there so by the time we got home we had a very sleepy, very hungry little girl. Thankfully, much like her brother, she handles frustrating situations fairly well so we made a quick dinner and sat down. We gave her small pieces of bread (something she's had several times before) and she started out just fine but then about ten minutes into dinner she began choking.

It wasn't the gagging, coughing, gasping kind of choking babies and kids do from time to time when they eat too fast or don't chew enough. It was a heart-stopping silent choking. She just sat there with her mouth open, her arms out-stretched and her lips quickly turning dark purple. I yelled for Joshua, ripped her out of her high chair, flipped her over and started using the heel of my hand to hit between her shoulder blades. It didn't do anything. After three or four good hits, Joshua was there and grabbed her from me. He also tried hitting her back to dislodge the food but it didn't work. So he turned her over and squeezed her between her rib cage and bellybutton and the bread came flying out. She screamed from fear and probably pain but overall she was fine. We opted to end dinner since it was clear she was too tired to even chew.

Years ago, when I took an infant CPR class, I never thought I'd have to do the heimlich maneuver on our nearly 11 month old daughter but I'm glad that both Joshua and I knew the steps. If you don't know how to do the heimlich on an infant, take a couple minutes and go HERE to read how to do it properly-it's a simple step by step guide. Also, for all my fur-mommies out there, I found a site that details the steps to doing the heimlich on your dog.

We joke about how our daughter's first birthday party will have a Survivor theme because she's a bit of a daredevil and her brother loves her a bit too strongly sometimes but last night made that joke a little too real for me. 


hmb said...

SO glad she is ok! We watched a video on it before they let us leave the hospital, but I def clicked on that link to refresh!!

Milwife Mama of One said...

Thank God she's okay!