Smiling group of kids

Start Them Young: Teaching Kids the Heimlich Maneuver is Necessary

Smiling group of kidsChoking remains the fifth among the leading causes of accidental death in America. Choking cuts off oxygen to the brain, making the Heimlich maneuver imperative. The emergency-response technique has saved 100,000 lives since its creation in 1974.

The Heimlich Maneuver Explained

Dr. Henry Heimlich, who developed the life-saving procedure, works by clearing the airway of a choking victim through abdominal thrusts that lift the diaphragm and dislodge air from the lungs.

The application of quick thrusts to the upper abdomen, above the belly button, emits the force of air capable of dislodging and expelling an obstruction of a piece of food stuck in the airway.

Its advantage over the “slap on the back” method is how the air pressure pushes the lodged material up and out of the mouth, and not down into the airway.

Leolifesavingskills.com, a company offering first-aid training courses, says that basic rescue skills can assist in saving someone’s life. Everyone needs to learn about the maneuver, even kids.

Knowing the Heimlich Maneuver Empowers Your Kid

It may be scary to imagine your kids facing a life-and-death situation and having them perform the maneuver. But knowledge exudes confidence. Passing on this knowledge to your kids also says, “You’re grown up enough to take some grown-up responsibility.” And when you trust your kids enough to give them such a responsibility, you’re also telling them that you believe in their abilities.

Knowing about the life-saving skill also encourages resolve and grit for a kid. When you teach your children about the maneuver, it’s similar to you entrusting them with a big responsibility. Learning about the Heimlich maneuver makes a leader out of any child.

In an emergency, instead of panicking, your kid will focus on the problem and apply what he learned. Letting kids learn about the procedure gives them the power to save a life. Seeing someone choking might make them feel powerless, but knowing the Heimlich maneuver can help your child make a difference.