How To Use A Compass

Using the compass alone

This is a very easy lesson, and I would say, not sufficient for those who would like to travel safely in unfamiliar terrain.

The first thing you need to learn, are the directions. North, South, East and West. Look at the figure and learn how they are. North is the most important.

There are several kinds of compasses, one kind to attach to the map, one kind to attach to your thumb. The thumb-compass is used mostly by orienteers who just want to run fast, and this is the kind of compass I normally use. But not in this tutorial. I would recommend the third kind of compass. Lets take a look at it:

How to read a compass

You see this red and black arrow? We call it the compass needle. Well, on some compasses it might be red and white for instance, but the point is, the red part of it is always pointing towards the earths magnetic north pole. Got that? That’s basically what you need to know. Its as simple as that.

via How to use a Compass alone.

Top Guns for Survival Scenarios

Top Guns for Survival Scenarios

When it comes to a survival scenario, you will need a reliable firearm. A threatening situation will be a dangerous moment for you and your loved ones, so you must be ready to protect them. As such, you need the necessary tools to achieve this purpose, and the undeniable weapon of our time is a gun. However, selecting the right gun suitable for your situation can be overwhelming, given that there are several options in the market.

Arguably, there is no one best survival firearm because every disaster scenario is different. Some people may want a gun for home defense or hunting, while others will need it for target shooting. Whatever your situation is, check out our top gun choices for survival scenarios.

Glock 19

The Glock 19 pistol in 9mm is one of the greatest firepowers in the market, with a full-size G17 polymer frame and compact G19 slide for resistance to the elements. This handgun is more versatile than other models and allows for quick and accurate shooting. What is more, Glock 19 pistols are easy to operate, maintain, and highly effective. With the Glock 19 model, you don’t have to worry about finding magazines or spare as they are popular and found everywhere.

This firearm is about 5.94 inches long with a barrel length of 4 inches and a trigger pull of 5.8 pounds. It also comes with a 17/19 magazine capacity; one magazine loader, four interchangeable back-straps, a cleaning rod, and one bore brush, all packed in a coyote hard case.

Top Guns for Survival Scenarios

Mossberg 500 FLEX JIC

The Mossberg 500 FLEX JIC (Just in Case) is the best modular shotgun ever made for self-defense. This pump-action machine is highly effective and reliable, providing outdoor enthusiasts and homeowners a way to tackle deadly situations. The Mossberg 500 FLEX JIC comes with a FLEX system to ensure versatility and high performance – you can swap barrels, fore-ends, and stocks to suit your requirements.

It is also considered one of the most comforting guns to be carried in a ‘just in case’ moment. Its full grip helps facilitate speed, accuracy, and maneuverability. The gun comes with a carrier bag for attacking accessories and helping users stay organized.

AR-15 Lowers

If you’re looking for the most effective, convenient, and reliable survival gun, you should consider an AR-15 lower model. The good thing is that you can find a model that suits your budget and function. AR-15 lower models are different in weight, manufacturing, and receiver materials, creating a huge price difference. Additionally, AR-15 lower receivers come in different configurations, making them suitable for both beginners and experienced users.

Top Guns for Survival Scenarios


22 Semi-Automatic Rifle

The .22 Semi-Automatic Rifle, also known as SA-22 or Semi-Automatic 22, is one of the most versatile rifles today. They have a small cartridge design allowing for thousands of rounds of ammunition. It can be an excellent choice for beginners who want to learn how to shoot, target, plink, and honing fundamentals because of its low recoil.

The 22 Semi-Automatic Rifle’s other essential features include reduced penetration, low noise, and relatively low cost, making it the best rifle possible for pest control and small game hunting. The most popular Semi-Automatic 22 rifles include the Ruger 10/22, the Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22, and the Marlin Model 60. All of these riffle models are reliable, accurate and can be optimized to meet your specific needs.

Smith & Wesson Model M&P R8

The Smith & Wesson Model M&P R8 is a modern service revolver that comes with rails for sight, lasers, and lights. Unlike conventional models, this center-fire handgun has a high capacity and stainless steel cylinder, maximizing its performance. Its design incorporates a scandium alloy frame for maintaining the gun’s weight down to about 36.4 ounces. Additionally, the M&P R8 comes with a two-piece barrel and a steel shroud held by a muzzle using a special nut to ensure barrel tension and increase accuracy.

Furthermore, the revolver utilizes all the modern features incorporated in the S&W revolver designs. Forget about the conventional pinned barrel, hammer-mounted firing pin, and pressed-in cylinder stop. Some modern changes include a cylinder stop, angular cuts, frame-mounted firing pin, and extractor star arms to keep the gun in position. The revolver also has a clean single-action pull and a smooth double-action pull, along with a smooth face measuring about 0.27 inches to help maintain high-performance.

5 Tips For Finding The Right Firearm For Your Situation

If you finally decide to own a personal firearm, there are several considerations that you must consider before purchase. It would be best if you had a clear intention for your gun use, as it could be for pleasure, personal defense, work, hunt, or any other purpose. It’s crucial to make the proper selection for your first firearm purchase to ensure that you’ll be happy and satisfied with it, as you would be using it for many years.

5 Tips For Finding The Right Firearm For Your Situation

It could be overwhelming to go into a gun shop and find the best firearm from their wide range of choices. It’s imperative first to know what kind of gun you like to own. Perhaps you’re interested in a single stack 9mm handgun or some other pistol? Whatever brand you prefer, and whichever factors and features are essential for you, you must do your research and understand their differences.

Consider the following tips in finding the perfect firearm for your situation:

  1. Know Its Purpose

Guns will have many different features depending on their purpose. This means that if you plan to purchase a firearm as a means for defense, you’ll end up having something completely different than when you find a gun for shooting competitions. You must determine your reason for wanting to purchase one first before looking for all the selections available. 

If you’re looking for survival firearms, there is no one definite best firearm as scenarios are varied. Take advantage of learning about the different kinds of weapons instead.

Another thing is to decide is the frequency of use for your gun. Are you planning to use it regularly? If so, this factor should also influence your purchase decisions. You can ask for an expert’s advice as to which gun is best for regular use.

  1. Choose Between New or Used Guns

If you have budget restrictions, it’s understandable to want to buy a used firearm instead. However, you must be careful of its condition, so make sure to find something that comes from a conscientious owner. As a second-hand buyer, you must inspect the pistol meticulously to avoid any problems and conflicts later.

On the other hand, if you have enough money to splurge for a brand-new gun, go for it because nothing will beat the quality and condition of being the first owner of a firearm. There are many perks for brand-new guns, like a factory-backed warranty, friendly support from authorized dealers, and you can inquire about many other accessories and firearm parts to give you practical gun knowledge.

  1. Choose Between A Pistol or Revolver

Before coming up with the features and functions you want, you need to decide if you wish to have a revolver or a pistol. 

Revolvers are no longer common for service use because they usually have limited bullet capacity on their cylinder. It also requires ample time for you to load up the bullets. If you want a semi-automatic function, then this type of gun is not for you. 

Furthermore, revolvers are also larger and heavier, so it’s not convenient to bring them around, mainly because it’s challenging to conceal. On the brighter side, revolvers are exceptionally reliable as well as easy to control and maintain. These are some of its good sides, so think about their merits and demerits well before purchasing a revolver.

As for pistols, they have dominated the professional field of service and defense these days, primarily because of their semi-automatic function. The design is modern; they are highly reliable, functional, and safe to use for any circumstances. They also offer a wide range of use. With its high magazine capacity and fast reloading procedure, you won’t ever have to take time before you can start shooting again.

fn guns

5 Tips For Finding The Right Firearm For Your Situation
  1. Enroll in A Firearms Training Course

Before purchase, it’s highly recommended for you to take up a training course first. There are many benefits to tactical training for civilians as you learn more about the weapon’s safety and proper handling. You will also be educated about the different types of guns and which ones would be comfortable for you to use. Other than that, you’ll also have an opportunity to test out different firearms and seek advice from your instructors, who are gun experts.

  1. Try Before You Buy

Feel free to finally go to a gun store if you have already finished the tips mentioned above. You can inquire about the specific gun you want and ask for further information and recommendations. Being able to touch and see the weapon personally can somehow help you decide, but make sure to handle the gun in a safe manner, as it could be dangerous. 

If possible, it would be better for you to try the gun you want first at a shooting range, with the guidance and support of an experienced shooting instructor. It’s different when you can test and try out how the gun works in your own hands.


Besides the required skills for using a firearm and a steady hand when shooting, educate yourself further about the firearm aspects, products, models, and accessories. Don’t forget to practice your shooting skills, too, if you want to be a better handler of your gun. Use these tips, and you’ll be able to find the perfect firearm eventually.

Duck Hunting Strategies: 7 Benefits Of Using Camo Nets

A camouflage net is a light net used primarily for concealing and giving a natural look to you and your gear. Camo nets are an essential tool in the duck hunting experience. They could give you an edge over other hunters in any environment.

 camouflage net
Texture military camouflage net hiding shelter in the forest. Day

Here are seven benefits of using a camo net for hunting ducks:

1. Weather Protection

If you’re into duck hunting, then you probably know that the prime duck season is during autumn and winter. This is when most birds begin to migrate to warmer regions. When the weather is wet and windy, ducks usually become more active. You’ll agree that it can be quite a thrill when there’s duck movement during a hunt.

A good camo net can protect you from the many elements you’re exposed to while you hunt. But this is provided you get it from professional suppliers. You could look around and compare options from outlets like Camo Netting Store and many others like them.

2. Optimal Hunting Position

One of the secrets of a successful duck hunting expedition is knowing where to find a paddling of ducks. However, knowing the right hunting spot is nothing without a proper strategy. Once you’ve found the ducks’ assembly place, you have to be well camouflaged, if you want to be successful at catching them.

Without camouflage, ducks could see you and make your hunting experience a stress. Using camo netting, however, allows you to move closer to almost any paddling without worrying about being spotted. If you don’t blend well with the natural environment, you could easily scare away your prey.

3. Protection For Your Hunting Gear

Sometimes you may need to take a little boat ride to get closer to your potential catch. When you go out on your boat, you have to deal with possibly unpleasant elements like water, the sun, and the wind.  These could mess up with your gear, if it’s not safely secure and protected. And that’s when camo nets come in handy.

You can use a camo net to protect your supplies when you’re out on the water. The nets can also be used to give your boat a natural look which could act as a disguise when you draw closer to the ducks.

If you need to cover your boat, you have to make sure you get a length that covers its entirety. If it’s for hunting gear protection, just make sure you have enough length to cover all of it.

Camo Netting
Decoy Ducks Hunting Equipment at Fishing Boat

4. Portability

Going duck hunting with heavy gear might be a turn off for most. If you use a heavy net, it might prove difficult to use–– but you probably already know this.  You’d want to use netting that’s easy to handle.

Camo netting is light and portable. You can fold and pack it in your backpack, for easy carriage. Any support could easily hold camo netting, for whatever purpose you desire. Quality camo netting is resistant to different conditions such as water, so you don’t have to worry about water absorption, which could make it heavy and hard to carry.

5. Durability

If you choose good quality camo material, it could serve you for several seasons. Some are, in fact, reinforced with anti-tear material that prevents them from ripping. If your camo net is ultraviolet- or UV-treated, you can be sure it won’t fade out easily.

UV-treated nets also have the advantage of preventing the sun’s glare. Remember, if you create a glare, your prey will be out paddling away in no time. Camo netting is also typically mold-resistant and waterproof. This is a perfect quality for duck hunting, which happens in or by the water.

6. Variety

There are hundreds of camo nets available out there, which can be an advantage for you. The beauty of it is that you can always choose camo netting that’s ideal for the environment in which you’re hunting.

The nets can have green and brown colorways, or blue and grey. There are many different designs and colorways. You could also get different textures including 3D, which could be perfect camouflage for blending well in any environment.

7. Accessibility

You can easily purchase camo nets online or in selected outlets. Just make sure you buy the right quality so you can get value for your money. Also make sure the one you choose, at least, has all the advantages discussed here.


Shooting your next meal can be fun and exhilarating, but only if you have all your gear and other accessories handy. Camo nets are indeed a necessity when duck hunting. They provide the perfect cover and stealth you need for getting close enough to catch your prey. Camo nets are also versatile, durable, and accessible. It’s an easier way to go duck hunting.

8 Useful Skills to Have to Barter During SHTF

Bartering is a great way to acquire goods and services because no money is needed to conduct the transaction. As we discussed in an earlier article, in times of economic collapse, hyperinflation can occur. This is a phenomenon where basic goods and groceries become unaffordable as money becomes almost useless.

Develop your bartering skills

This has happened multiple times throughout history, including recently in Venezuela. Having in-demand skills to barter can help you survive such a crisis

What Is Bartering?

Bartering is trading. Bartering can involve goods or services. For example, if you have extra ground flour but no vegetables, you can trade some of your flour for vegetables. Or you could trade lessons on how to use spreadsheets in return for vegetables.

Bartering has existed for millenia, and indeed was used before money was invented. In our modern world, when countries experience a serious economic crisis, citizens often return to bartering. In 2011, residents of Greece returned to bartering to get their needs met. For example, NPR reported that one woman who lost her job, asked her neighbor: “Could you please do the ironing for me, and I will teach English to your children?’”

Trading skills for food or other services is the best way to acquire what you need to get through a crisis. Having skills that many others need will make you a valuable member of any community.

There are numerous reasons that bartering could become necessary including hyperinflation, economic problems, natural disasters, power outages, political problems and disruption of the supply chain.

How to Barter

You don’t have to wait for a crisis to barter. You can start practicing your bartering skills today and they can be helpful in everyday situations. You’ve probably already bartered at some point in your life. For example, maybe you’ve fixed a neighbor’s car in exchange for some carpentry work in your home.

You can start by building good community relationships – it’s almost like starting a new business. Don’t wait until a crisis is upon you and get prepared. Learning how to negotiate can also be helpful when it comes time to trade your skills for products.

If you don’t have a skill that you think would be useful, start learning a skill today.

Home Repair and Carpentry Skills

Here are some examples of useful skills that will be in-demand during an economic collapse

Most homeowners struggle to fix problems in their home. Problems can quickly become urgent. For example, a storm can cause downed trees and flying branches that can damage roofs and windows leading to water leaks and damaged interiors.

Plumbing and electrical problems — such as backed-up toilets or smoking outlets — often require special skills and can be urgent too.

Basic carpentry skills can go far, such as building a new set of stairs, a deck, an add-on, or fencing. Remember that in times of crisis family members who lose jobs may consolidate and move in with relatives. That can lead to an increase in the demand for sectioned-off rooms, modifications to basements, garages, lofts, and so on.

In dire times, some families may need to barter to have an open-air shelter built (a simple one-roof structure) to quickly accommodate friends and relatives that are down on their luck. In these cases being able to build outhouses may also be in demand.

If you have skills in any of these areas, you will be somewhat self-sufficient and you’ll be able to trade this skill for the items you need.

Barter your skills

Mechanical Skills

Making sure vehicles are running properly during a crisis is important, and most people today don’t have the necessary skills or knowledge to repair a car. It really is a gift.

Having knowledge of vehicle repair will make you popular in any community. Mechanical skills go beyond changing tires, oil, or repairing cars. You will likely be able to repair other pieces of equipment like small generators, small tractors, chain saws, snowmobiles, electric or non-electric bikes, ATVs, motorcycles, and lawn mowers.

Knowledge of First-Aid and Emergency Response

Skills like cleaning and bandaging wounds, treating minor illnesses and splinting fractures could make you indispensable in any community.

Whenever treating someone medically, there could be legal liability issues associated with it, though. Therefore getting certified would be wise.

There are many community opportunities for learning emergency response, such as Red Cross courses or joining your local CERT or your state defense force (if your state has one). State defense forces, like the Texas State Guard, operate under the authority of the state’s governor and may be called on to support local National Guard units by providing traffic control, setting up communications centers, assisting in search and rescue, or providing other logistical support.


This is one skill you will need to be legally qualified for, of course. A crisis will not stop babies from being born. During a crisis, hospitals could be closed or overrun with patients. Having the skill to help women give birth would be a valuable bartering skill in the community. 

Gardening Skills

Knowing how to grow your food will not only give you food to barter and peace of mind, but you can also teach others how to grow their own food.

Gardening Skills

A simple way to start is to begin buying seeds to store up. (These can also be bartered.) Try growing one single type of crop, like potatoes or strawberries. You’ll learn a lot about what works and what doesn’t that you can then share with others.

The carpentry skills we mentioned above also apply to gardening, as you’ll be able to create raised garden beds, chicken coops, fencing, and tool sheds.

Hunting and Fishing

Having the skill of knowing how to acquire food for yourself and others is excellent for bartering. Being skillful at hunting, fishing, and raising animals will not only get you the food you might need, but enough extra food to trade for other products and services.

Be sure to research what licenses and safety classes (for hunting) might be required in your area. If you choose hunting then you’ll also want to learn whether there are game meat butchers in your area and how they operate or if they will teach you how to prepare your own catch.


During a crisis, there is a good chance that telephones and cell phones may not work (or may not work consistently). Having a ham radio and the ability to build an antenna out of a piece of wire is a skill you can use. Getting a ham radio license is not difficult, and you can find used radios at affordable prices. With this skill, you and your community can keep in touch with family and authorities outside of your community.

Other Skills and Services To Consider

We’ve mentioned 8 skills that may be in-demand in a time of economic and social upheaval. Here are a few more we’d like you to consider:

  • Transportation: Those without transportation may need a way to get to the grocery store or appointments.
  • Lessons: teaching others how to do something is valuable. Lessons might include how to create a website, use a computer or certain software, how to fix a piece of equipment, or how to install fencing.
  • Mending clothes: in times of mass joblessness people will increasingly need to mend holds and tears in their current clothing.
  • Cooking, cleaning, and laundry: those who have in-demand skills and multiple family obligations will likely need help keeping their own household going.
  • Security: how to use common items or tools and weapons to protect oneself and others
  • Clearing land: knowing how to clear downed trees from roadways and how to clear brush on property
  • Firewood chopping and stacking: the skill to turn raw logs into firewood and stacking it in a stable formation
  • Snowplowing and sanding


Learning a new skill today will help you prepare for any type of crisis. And it will give you the confidence that comes from becoming more self-reliant.

Even if you already have a bartering skill, learning a new one will make you twice as valuable to those around you.

Tips for First-Time Homeowners when Prepping for Natural Disasters

Prepare for the worst

Everyone should have a natural disaster game plan. As a first-time homeowner it’s even more important to make sure you and your home are ready for an emergency situation that might come down to evacuating your home or sheltering in place for an extended time period. When you are getting settled into a new home it’s an ideal time to think about getting these plans in place. Here are some disaster preparedness tips that can help everyone in your household feel more at ease about the unthinkable. 

Prepare your disaster kit 

One of the simplest steps to take, no matter where you live, is to gather what disaster preparedness experts like the American Red Cross call an emergency kit. This is a store of supplies that you can quickly take with you if a disaster strikes and you need to evacuate your home. It will provide you with basic necessities for at least three days. Kits will be personalized based on your specific needs and should include items like: essential medications, a flashlight, first aid kit, battery-powered or hand-crank radio, family emergency contact information and copies of important documents, blankets, water, cash, portable chargers for electronic devices, and nonperishable food. These items should be stored together somewhere in your home that is easily accessible in a moment’s notice. No matter if your city or town is at risk for a flood, tornado, earthquake, hurricane, or even has a low risk of natural disasters, this kit is essential.

Be aware of your surroundings

Knowing what to expect can help you stay on your toes in an emergency situation. The National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University has built a tool which allows you to enter your address to see the level of hazard risk for your area — for example, for an avalanche, earthquake, drought, landslide, or other disasters. The tool will also give you an overall hazard index which can help you better understand general natural disaster risk. As part of your research, knowing the radio stations in your area that cover breaking news can keep you in the loop about what’s happening if there is a widespread power outage and mobile phone reception is down for an extended period of time. 

Natural disasters happen

Enroll in disaster insurance

Depending on where you live and the hazard risks, your homeowners insurance policy may or may not cover your home, such as for natural disasters like an earthquake or flood. Once you understand the potential hazards for your area, talk with your insurance agent about understanding disaster coverage and add extra coverage if necessary to add to your peace of mind. For example, California residents will definitely want to consider earthquake insurance, while people living in Texas will want to think about flood coverage. 

Make an inventory

When working with your insurance agent to determine your coverage you will be asked to give a basic inventory and value estimate of the items in your home. This list will be essential if you need to report damage as part of filing an insurance claim. Making an inventory might also include securing important documents like birth certificates, marriage licenses, and passports in a waterproof box or folder and adding this to your go kit.

Taking these preparedness steps can help put you at ease about natural disasters since there is no way to predict when they might strike. When you have a plan in place you can also help ensure the safety for everyone in your household if you do need to face a hazardous situation.

4 Useful Gadgets That Are Great For Family Camping

Many different useful gadgets are great for family camping, but we will list only four of them in this list. We think that these will be the most helpful for your family because they are timesavers and very convenient. It is essential to ensure that you are prepared for your camping trip long before you go, not to be stranded once you get there.

1. Instant Cabin / Tent

An instant cabin-style tent will be handy for you and your family. It is pre-fitted with attached poles, a room divider, zipper doors, windows for ventilation and privacy, and a hanging storage pocket located in different tent places. This fully taped water-resistant rain fly is already attached, and it is set up and only 60 seconds on its own. This will help you and your family when you are just getting to your campsite, and you have other things to remove from the car and set up before you can sit down and relax. Setting up your camping tent can take the most extended amount of time and be the most stressful out of everything you have to set up on your trip. This invention takes the hassle out of all of that.

2. A Flashlight

A first-aid flashlight is an incredible invention that will be very helpful on your camping trip. This is a flashlight that has first aid kit items inside of it. It comes complete with painkillers, anti-subject wipes, tweezers, nitrile gloves, a compass, and an emergency whistle. This first aid flashlight can be easily attached to your outdoor gear or your belt. There should be perfect items you have when you were out camping because it includes most things that you would need in an emergency. This first aid flashlight has many items included in it for an actual emergency; however, it is also essential to have a more extensive first aid kit at your campsite that you were staying at.

3. A Portable Generator

A portable generator would be a very significant resource to have with you when you were camping. This could be there to help you charge your cell phones, your car battery if it dies, anything that can be plugged in to charge can use this outdoor generator. An inverter generator is a lightweight package that delivers 2000 running lots. It is easy to transport in your bag as well as store in your campsite. This generator is very quiet so that it does not disturb your trip or your neighbors trip, and the fuel consumption is low, so your generator will run for a long time and charge your electronics for a long time, probably even longer than you need it to.

portable wood burning stove

4. A Portable Wood-burning Stove

A little stove is always handy and a great idea to bring to the campsite; therefore it’s an excellent addition to your camping equipment. This can be used whether or not you have a fire pit at your campsite. It is sleek, handy, and eco-friendly. If you happen to be at a utah state park campground, you will find this one a total asset because it will allow you to enjoy the sky and nature without all the bells and whistles that electric items have. You can use it for cooking your food, boil water; you can use the fire heat to keep yourself warm; you can use the firelight to make your camping trip have more visibility. And there is also an option where you can use it as electricity to charge your phones and other equipment.

This portable wood-burning camp stove does not have enough energy to power your car battery if it dies. Still, it is an excellent addition to your camping equipment because it can charge other necessities.

As mentioned above, it is imperative to be prepared for your camping trip way before you even go on it. Do you want to ensure that you have all the necessary equipment before leaving, not to be stranded once you get on your trip. There are many more fancy gadgets that we did not mention on this list that will help you to get the best out of your camping experience. As you go camping, you will learn what items work best for you and what items you would like to purchase to make your trip more enjoyable.

Author Bio

Stephanie Caroline Snyder graduated from The University of Florida in 2018; she majored in Communications with a minor in Mass Media. Currently, she is an Author, a Freelance Internet Writer, and a Blogger.

Choking and the Heimlich Maneuver


Choking is a life threatening situation that occurs whenever a foreign object lodges in the throat or windpipe. This can cause blockage to the oxygen flow to the brain. Choking a real medical emergency that requires fast and appropriate action by the closest available person. Choking can cause potential death if not acted upon immediately.

Causes of choking

While choking occurs most often among infants and children, choking among adults is not uncommon. [1] According to Injury Facts 2017, choking is the fourth leading cause of unintentional injury death. Of the 5,051 people who died from choking in 2015, 2,848 were older than 74.

Choking and the Heimlich Maneuver

These are the common reasons for choking:

  • When a foreign matter ends up in the trachea and becomes stuck as the airway narrows, choking occurs. Food or other foreign matter is supposed to go on another path when swallowed. As swallowing occurs, the epiglottis covers the trachea to prevent the swallowed object from entering the airway. However, when swallowing happens while talking or laughing, the object may go down the wrong pipe hence getting stuck in the airway.
  • Normal swallowing may be deterred by alcohol consumption or drug intake.
  • When food is not chewed properly or when swallowing too much food, large chunks of food may become lodged in the throat.
  • Certain illnesses may cause choking such as Parkinson’s disease may also cause some difficulty in swallowing and this can be a potential cause for choking.

Choking hazards for infants and toddlers

Infants and toddlers are still learning how to chew and swallow properly. This means that they are more prone to choking. Parents must supervise closely when an infant or toddler is eating. They also tend to put anything they touch in their mouth so they must be watched at all times. According to the CDC, the following food are potential hazards to infants and children[2]:

  • Cooked or raw whole corn kernels
  • Uncut cherry or grape tomatoes
  • Pieces of hard raw fruit or vegetables
  • Whole pieces of canned fruit
  • Uncut grapes, berries, cherries, or melon balls
  • Uncooked dry fruit such as raisins
  • Whole or chopped nuts and nut butters such as peanut butter
  • Tough or large chunks of meat
  • Hot dogs, meat sticks, or sausages
  • Fish with bones
  • Large chunks of cheese, especially string cheese
  • Cookies or granola bars
  • Potato or corn chips, pretzels, or similar snack foods
  • Crackers or breads with seeds, nut pieces, or whole grain kernels
  • Whole kernels of cooked rice, barley, wheat, or other grains
  • Hard candy, jelly beans, caramels, gum drops, or gummy candies
  • Chewing gum
  • Marshmallows

Choking symptoms

Most of the time, choking victims will have difficulty in speaking so it is important to know the symptoms of potential choking just in case one is around someone who might be a victim. The following are the known symptoms of choking:

  • Coughing hard
  • Gagging
  • Throat clutching
  • Panicking signals while unable to speak
  • Chest beating
  • Inability to speak
  • Turning pale or blue
  • Losing consciousness


It is difficult to know when choking will occur however, certain practices can be put in place to prevent this from happening.

  1. Eat and chew with enough pacing.
  2. Avoid talking or laughing while eating.
  3. Avoid alcohol before eating.
  4. For infants and toddlers, always supervise them while eating.
  5. Make sure that a child’s area is free from objects that can be easily fit in the child’s mouth.
  6. When an infant is just beginning solid food intake, cut up the infant’s food into smaller pieces.
  7. For someone with choking prone illness, meals should always be facilitated.

The heimlich maneuver

Named after the American surgeon Henry Heimlich, the Heimlich maneuver is a well known emergency procedure that is recommended for someone who is choking. This can be learned even by a non-medical professional. Most of the time, choking needs immediate intervention and waiting for a medical professional for help may endanger the life of the victim. The Heimlich maneuver is a series of under-the-diaphragm abdominal thrusts. These thrusts are intended to lift the diaphragm, forcing air from the lungs to produce an artificial cough. The cough will force air through the trachea, pushing the object blocking the airway out to the mouth. Abdominal thrusts must be strong enough to force air from the lungs but not too strong as to damage any internal organs or the victim’s ribs.

Before performing the procedure, make sure to call emergency medical help if you are alone with the victim or have someone else call otherwise. To perform the Heimlich maneuver [3]:

  1. Reach around the person’s waist.
  2. Position one clenched fist above the navel and below the rib cage.
  3. Grasp your fist with your other hand. Pull the clenched fist sharply and directly backward and upward under the rib cage 6 to 10 times quickly.
  4. If the person is obese or in late pregnancy, give chest compressions.
  5. Continue uninterrupted until the obstruction is relieved or advanced life support is available. In either case, the person should be examined by a healthcare provider as soon as possible.

When helping an infant or toddler, extra precaution is needed. Before performing thrusts, try doing at least five firm blows on the child’s back. If the child responds with a cry or cough, this is a good sign. Continue giving back blows until the child coughs out the cause of the choking. If the child is still unresponsive, place the child facing upwards on your lap with the head in a lower position than the whole body. Perform chest thrusts using two fingers on the center of the breastbone just below the nipples. The thrust must be enough to compress the child’s chest a third to a half of its depth.

Continue doing the Heimlich maneuver until the obstruction is cleared or medical assistance arrives.




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