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Heimlich vs CPR: What To Do When Someone Chokes

Debashruti Banerjee

7 min read

Though there are some scary situations we can’t predict, like when someone starts to choke or stops breathing. Proper knowledge of first aid maneuvers like the Heimlich method and CPR can help us potentially save a life, even our own.

Choking is a hazard not to be taken lightly as it can occur at any time, giving us little time to react Our throat contains two pathways一the oesophagus (food pipe) and the trachea (windpipe). The trachea leads directly to the lungs and therefore any foreign object lodged in there can result in choking. One may start gagging, coughing, grasping their throat, wheezing or even fainting. In some cases, one may even turn blue, which is known as cyanosis. According to a 2021 paper in the journal National Center for Biotechnology Information, cyanosis occurs when “oxygen might not reach hemoglobin in an adequate or sufficient amount as a result of conditions affecting the respiratory system, cardiovascular system, and the central nervous system”.

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