Embracing a Healthy Family: 12 Choking Hazards to Avoid for Children

12 Choking Hazards to Avoid for Children

This was just posted on HealthCommunities.com and I had no idea that some of the items on the list were choking culprits like peanut butter!

August 3, 2010

Most choking incidents involve tots younger than age 3. But the danger still exists for children older than four, suggests a study published in the Archives of Otolaryngology: Head and Neck Surgery. Here's what you need to know to protect your youngster from choking.

The researchers, from several U.S. universities and medical centers, looked at information on almost 3,000 children admitted to hospitals in 2003 for airway obstruction. Younger kids—with an average age of 2.5 years old—were more likely to have ingested choking foods, while slightly older children—with an average age of 4.3 years old—were more likely to have tried to swallow a non-food object such as a small toy.

So, keep these common choking hazards away from babies, toddlers and preschoolers:
  • nuts and seeds
  • peanut butter
  • soft bread
  • grapes
  • popcorn
  • hard or gooey candies
  • round, firm foods such as hot dogs and raw carrots, unless they are chopped
  • uninflated or popped balloons
  • coins
  • marbles
  • tiny toy parts
  • button batteries

The American Academy of Pediatrics also recommends that parents and other caregivers learn choking first aid and Infant and Child CPR. To find out about classes in your area, check with the American Red Cross at redcross.org.

Source: Shah, Patel, Lander and Choi. Management of Foreign Bodies Obstructing the Airway in Children. Archives of Otolaryngology. April 2010. 

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