New first aider saves chok­ing child’s life

Wexford People - - NEWS - By DAVID TUCKER

A woman put her newly-ac­quired oc­cu­pa­tional first aid skills to good use when she saved the life of a child who got a bro­ken lol­lipop stuck in her throat dur­ing a trick-or-treat ses­sion in Wex­ford town.

Jen­nifer Ryan said she was out trick-or-treat­ing with two of her own chil­dren on John’s Road in West­lands when she be­came aware of a small child ‘who was in trou­ble’ af­ter part of a hard lol­lipop be­came de­tached from its stick and got stuck in her throat.

‘She had been cough­ing at first and then I re­alised she was chok­ing,’ Jen­nifer told this news­pa­per.

‘I re­acted straight away and gave her a few taps on the back and then I used the Heim­lich manouevre. The bro­ken piece of the lol­lipop, which had been lodged in her throat, then came back up and she started breath­ing,’ said Jen­nifer, who hails from Water­ford, but is cur­rently stay­ing with friends in Ge­orge’s Street.

A mother of five, Jen­nifer had only com­pleted a QQI Level 5 oc­cu­pa­tional first aid course at the Wex­ford-based Com­mu­nity Train­ing and Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­tre (CTEC) the week be­fore, which had in­cluded in­struc­tions on how to per­form the Heim­lich manouevre, which in­volves giv­ing ab­dom­i­nal thrusts to re­move for­eign ob­jects from up­per air­ways.

‘Had I not done the train­ing, I would have been a help­less as the next per­son,’ said Jen­nifer.

She said the three-year-old girl’s mother was present along with other chil­dren and sev­eral other adults, but didn’t re­alise what had hap­pened un­til the child be­gan chok­ing.

‘She seemed in shock more than any­thing,’ said Jen­nifer. She said that af­ter ad­min­is­ter­ing the first aid, she ad­vised the woman to take her child to hos­pi­tal to get her checked in case the sharp edges of the bro­ken lol­lipop had caused any in­juries.

‘I don’t let my own chil­dren eat those hard lol­lipops. They can be very danger­ous if they break, she said, adding that she didn’t know the name of the child or the fam­ily she had aided.

Jen­nifer Ryan used her first aid skills to save a child.

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