A TROWELL mum’s first aid skills were put to the test when her son started choking just a day after she completed a St John Ambulance course.
Carina Smith gave nine-year-old Tyler three sharp blows between the shoulder blades and out popped the boiled sweet he had been choking on.
The incident happened as Tyler was bouncing on his bed.
Carina said: “I asked him if he was okay and he just looked at me, going pale and red at the same time and pointing at his mouth.
“He dropped to the floor, so I kept him calm and delivered the blows as I’d been taught, and the mint just popped out.
“He was quite frightened, it could easily have killed him.
“I was just so grateful that I knew what to do.
“When you learn these things you never think you’re going to have to use them on your own family, especially only the next day.”
Once Tyler had recovered, Carina was eager to report what had happened to her first aid trainer Glenda Wood.
She added: “Normally you ring your mum in a situation like that, but I was so excited because I’d actually used my first aid, that I rang Glenda instead.”
Now mum-of-three Carina has signed up as a volunteer with the Ilkeston division of St John Ambulance, so she can help other people.
She says she wants to become the difference between a life saved and a life lost.
Glenda was thrilled with her pupil’s success.
She said: “I was very proud of her. Every year more than 800 people die from choking. We believe that no-one should die because they needed first aid and didn’t get it.”
Carina signed up for the St John Ambulance course after reading about community first aid training sessions on the charity’s website.
She went along to an eight-week Friday evening course in Derby and gained her first aid certificate at the final session, just the day before sheput her skills into action whe she found Tyler was choking.
To find out about community first aid courses across the county, telephone St John Ambulance Derbyshire on 0845 1304999 and www.sja.org.uk.