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February 1999 - Volume 2 - Issue 2

Causes and Signals of Choking

Information Provided by The American Red Cross

Did you know that more than 2,800 people die each year as a result of choking? Would you be able to recognize if a family member or friend started to choke? Do you know what activities might lead to choking? Here are some common causes of choking:

- Trying to swallow large pieces of poorly chewed food.

- Drinking alcohol before or during meals. Alcohol dulls the nerves that aid in swallowing.

- Wearing dentures. Dentures make it different to sense whether food is fully chewed before it is swallowed.

- Eating while talking excitedly or laughing.

- Eating too fast.

- Walking, playing, or running with food or objects in the mouth.

These are just some of the causes of choking. If you want to learn more about the signals of choking or the care for a person choking, sign up for a CPR course.

* Remember: The Colorado State rules and regulations for 24-hour care requires that the primary care provider of each household MUST maintain CPR/First Aid qualification. The standards outlined by The American Red Cross is: CPR renewed annually and First Aid renewed every three years. If you have not been certified by Red Cross, please follow the expiration dates usually located on the certificate. If you do not maintain your certification, it can affect your licensing status with the State.

For more information, visit the American Red Cross Website

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