A 16 year old boy recently died in Islamabad. He and his brother were sleeping in the same room. Late night he got up to vomit. His brother said he held his hand to his mouth as he went to the bathroom. After vomiting, he complained of difficulty in breathing and later he died.

Now it is assumed that he held on to his vomiting till he reached the toilet (in order not to spoil the bed or the carpet etc.) and that’s what choked him. The vomit went straight to his wind pipe and the breathing tract.

So, we MUST ‘educate’, ‘train’ and ‘manner’ our kids to puke wherever and whenever it comes, and then go to the washroom. We should never force them to hold on to their vomit for any reason. The carpets can be washed but we cannot get our children back.

P.S. Same should apply to sudden coughing (especially with some eatable or liquid in the mouth) or sneezing and these mustn’t be held also for any reason. Parents should educate themselves with the Anti Choking First Aid steps/measures that are available aplenty on the net.

COL. RIAZ JAFRI (RETD),

Rawalpindi, February 11.