The airway may he obstructed by food, vomit, or some other foreign material, by swelling of the throat after injury by muscle spasms in drowning, a heavy weight on the chest or, in an unconscious casualty by the tongue. A child may inhale a foreign body that can then block the lower air passages, or swell within the lung, possibly resulting in a collapsed lung or in pneumonia.
General signs and symptoms
- Noisy labored breathing.
- Grey—blue skin (cyanosis).
- Flaring of the nostrils.
- Reversed movement of the chest while breathing: the chest wall will suck in as the casualty breathes in.
- Drawing in of the chest wall between the ribs and of the soft spaces above the collar bones and breastbone.
First Aid for Airway Obstruction
YOUR AIMS ARE:
- • To restore a supply of fresh air to the casualty’s lungs.
- • To seek medical aid.
Remove any obstruction to the casualty breathing, such as debris restricting chest movement or anything over the mouth and nose. If needed, move her into fresh air.
IF the casualty is unconscious, open the airway, check breathing and pulse, and be ready to resuscitate
IF the casualty is conscious, reassure her, but keep her under observation. Call a doctor, even if she seems to have recovered completely.
The medical term for this condition is asphyxia Suffocation is often through result from a physical harrier to the airway and associated with smothering.
In fact, suffocation occurs when life is threatened because the breath is deficient in oxygen. Suffocation can therefore result not just [torn an airway obstruction, but also from contamination of the air with, or example. fumes or carbon monoxide that interfere with the ability of the blood to absorb oxygen.