Positional asphyxiation is a serious risk that must be considered when using restraint techniques in any setting. It occurs when a person’s body position prevents them from breathing correctly, leading to a lack of oxygen and potentially fatal consequences. Let us look at the causes of positional asphyxiation, the warning signs to look out for, and how to prevent it from happening.
What is Positional Asphyxiation?
Positional asphyxiation occurs when a person’s body position prevents them from breathing properly. It can happen in various settings, including law enforcement, healthcare, and emergency services. The most common cause of positional asphyxiation is when a person is restrained in a position that compresses their chest or restricts their ability to move. It can happen when a person is placed in a prone position, where their chest is pressed against the ground, or when they are restrained in a way that restricts their movement.
Factors that Contribute to Positional Asphyxiation
Warning Signs of Positional Asphyxiation
There are several warning signs that a person may be experiencing positional asphyxiation. These include:
If you suspect a person is experiencing positional asphyxiation, it is crucial to act quickly. Remove any restraints and place the person in a position that allows them to breathe properly. Call emergency medical assistance immediately if the person is unconscious or not breathing.
Preventing Positional Asphyxiation
To prevent positional asphyxiation, it is important to be aware of its contributing factors and take steps to mitigate them. Some steps that can be taken in order to avoid positional asphyxiation include:
Positional asphyxiation is a serious risk that must be considered when using restraint techniques. It is beneficial to be aware of the warning signs and act immediately if they occur, and take steps to prevent positional asphyxiation from happening. By taking part in training solutions, one can avoid such a situation and possibly a loss of life.