Decreasing Child Choking Risk

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Posted: Monday, August 19, 2013 10:42 am | Updated: 11:08 am, Mon Aug 19, 2013.

The most common cause of non-fatal choking in young children is food.

Kids under 5 are especially at risk, but you can cut the chances by taking a few precautions.

Choking prevention starts with understanding what stage of development your child is in.  Once a child turns 2, they may have all of their teeth, but they may have trouble swallowing different food items.

Different shapes, sizes, and textures could increase the choking risk.  This continues to be concerning up to age 5.

A good defense is to cut everything into small pieces, the best size to cut up foods for kids should be about the quarter of the diameter of a hot dog or a big carrot, also cut food into triangular shapes, this will allow for air to pass in the event the food item does get caught in a child’s throat.

But at any age, particularly small kids, they should be sitting down when they eat, even if they’re eating candy. They’re easily distracted, they’re always running around, they should never be playing with food in their mouth.  Getting kids to sit and focus on their food decreases the risk for choking significantly.

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