A new paper published in Resuscitation offers a way to save yourself if you’re choking alone: Hang your head upside-down, either by striking a downward dog or grabbing a chair to kneel on and hang off of, like you’re trying to peer underneath.
The upside-down head position is already a method used for saving choking babies, but combining this with other methods in adults raises the chance you’ll live to Seamless another day, the study suggests. Gravity works in your favor this way, and saliva or food semisolids are draw out of your airway. While it doesn’t outline the other self-saving methods, the Mayo Clinic recommends attempting to Heimlich oneself with fist-thrusts against a chair back or countertop, and others recommend slamming yourself chest-down into the ground to try and dislodge it.
Or you can forget all of this and spring for a “Heimlich Helper” tool, if you’re into buying things with a dozen reviews that all say “never tried it, five stars.”
Do you ever wonder how they test these hypotheses? Artur Luczak, author of the paper, seems to have stumbled into an unlucky bite of food and had a eureka moment: “I also experienced food choking, and using the upside-down position helped me to remove the object from my airway, which later prompted me to investigate this procedure.”