The recovery position

If a person is unconscious but is breathing and has no other life threatening conditions, they should be placed in the recovery position. 

Putting someone in the recovery position will keep their airway clear and open. It also ensures that any vomit or fluid won't cause them to choke.

To place someone in the recovery position:

  • with the casualty lying on their back, kneel on the floor at their side 
  • place the arm nearest you at a right angle to their body with their hand upwards, towards the head 
  • tuck their other hand under the side of their head, so that the back of their hand is touching their cheek 
  • bend the knee farthest from you to a right angle 
  • carefully roll the person onto their side by pulling on the bent knee 
  • the top arm should be supporting the head and the bottom arm will stop you rolling them too far 
  • open their airway by gently tilting their head back and lifting their chin, and check that nothing is blocking their airway 
  • stay with the person and monitor their condition until help arrives