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Thursday, January 29, 2015

How to Save a Life -- Maybe Yours

I nearly died recently -- from eating a banana.

I was eating a banana as I tried to set up my new digital DVR. All of a sudden I was unable to breathe. I hurried to the kitchen, thinking I would be able to cough the banana into the sink. I tried, but nothing happened.

I pounded on the counter, hoping to attract the attention of my daughter, who was in her bedroom getting ready to leave. She heard me gagging and ran in to see what was going on, thinking at first that one of our dogs was choking. She immediately put her arms around my chest and did the Heimlich maneuver, which dislodged the piece of banana. All I could do was say 'thank you.'

We both were badly shaken by the experience. I don't know whether I would have been able to dislodge the food on my own or not. I doubt it. I know there is a technique for people to use on themselves, but I'm not sure I could have done it properly. Failing that, I would have called 9-1-1 and hoped the paramedics would arrive in time.

I have never been so close to death before, and it is not a pleasant experience. So please, learn the Heimlich maneuver, and make sure others in your business, organization and household do, too. Information is available at the following links:

http://www.wikihow.com/Perform-the-Heimlich-Maneuver-on-Yourself
http://www.wikihow.com/Perform-the-Heimlich-Maneuver

I like these two links more than links provided by various medical organizations because the information is presented in easy-to-understand steps, with illustrations. Please familiarize yourself with the Heimlich maneuver. You never know when you could be called upon to save a life.