Position the casualty's head so that his face is up.
(2) Open the casualty's mouth. If the casualty's mouth does not open
readily, use the crossed-finger method of opening the mouth.
(a) Cross the index finger and thumb of one hand.
(b) Place the tip of the thumb and the tip of the index finger against
opposite sets of teeth on the cutting or grinding edge of the teeth.
(c) Slide the thumb and index finger across each other in opposite
directions to separate the upper and lower teeth and open the casualty's mouth.
(3) Open the casualty's airway by grasping his tongue and lower jaw
between your thumb and finger and lifting the tongue and jaw. This procedure, called
the tongue-jaw lift, moves the tongue away from the back of the casualty's throat. By
lifting the tongue and jaw, the casualty's airway is opened further and foreign objects
are easier to locate. In addition, repositioning the casualty's tongue and jaw may loosen
an object in the airway enough to allow air to move past it.
(4) Look into the casualty's mouth to see if you can locate the object
causing the blockage. Perform the finger sweep even if you cannot visually locate the
(5) Insert the index finger of your free hand along the inside of the casualty's
cheek down to the base of his tongue.
(6) Sweep the throat with a "hooking" motion. A foreign object may be
dislodged as you move your finger from the side of his throat toward the center. You
may need to push the object to the side of the throat and trap it before removing the
object. Be sure that you do not force the object deeper into the airway. If the casualty
is wearing dentures, remove the dentures if they interfere with sweeping the mouth.
(7) If an object is located and can be removed, lift the object with your
"hooking" finger and remove the object from the casualty's throat and mouth.
d. Administer Two Ventilations. After performing the finger sweep, open the
casualty's airway using the head-tilt/chin-lift or jaw-thrust (paragraph 3-6) and attempt to
administer two full breaths (paragraph 3-9). This procedure should take between 3 to 5
(1) If your attempts to ventilate are successful, check for spontaneous
breathing. If the casualty does not breathe on his own, perform rescue breathing or
CPR as appropriate.