A scary experience

On Friday night I had a pretty scary experience.

I have some quite important advice for everyone. DO NOT LAUGH AND DRINK WATER (or anything) AT THE SAME TIME!!!

On Friday night I was laughing and drinking water at the same time and I started to choke. It was that sort of laugh where you suddenly take a really deep breath and I inhaled a load of water. My lungs closed up pretty much straight away and I started being sick with the effort of trying to get air in.

I was really lucky that my brother heard me being sick because he came in. He doesn’t know any first aid so he ran up the stairs to get Mum. He was shouting “Mum! Jenni is dying!” I really never want to hear those words again.

I had managed to clear my air way a little bit, but I had some major stridor going on (stridor is the noise your lungs make when you have an upper airway obstruction) and I was still being sick. It took my brother, probably about 30 seconds to get my mum and by that time I had pretty much cleared my airway completely. But it was very scary indeed.

It turned out that my brother was running around with his phone getting ready to phone an ambulance if needed, which is a pretty daunting thought.

I’ve pretty much recovered now, my peak flow did take a hit though…. It dropped to 230 (57%) but it is slowly coming back up and it now sat at a pretty reasonable 270 (68%).

I think I had a pretty unusual reaction to the choking, while I was actually choking, since I was so calm (it was scary how calm I was) and even after the event, I wasn’t shaking or having any sort of adrenaline release… I think that my ability to stay calm during the choking helped me clear my airway. Although I do understand that if I had inhaled that water any further I would have probably drowned. After all, a person can drown after inhaling a teaspoon of fluid.

I have since taught my brother and parents what to do in case anyone does choke, and I would urge everyone else to learn the same. You never know when you are going to need first aid skills and I think everyone should have at least a basic knowledge of what to do in the case of emergencies.

If anyone is interested in doing first aid courses I suggest you visit St John Ambulance and the Red Cross.

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