Sunday 24 June 2018

Ten foods that are actually choking hazards for babies and young children

Photo: Thinkstockphotos.com
Photo: Thinkstockphotos.com
Geraldine Gittens

Geraldine Gittens

Babies and young children have a natural habit of putting things into their mouths - even foods that could easily cause them to choke.

There are ten foods in particular which can be a choking hazard for your little ones, according to the HSE.

  • Hot dogs/sausages
  • Raw carrots
  • Apples
  • Grapes (and similar shaped fruit and vegetables, e.g., cherry tomatoes, soft fruits)
  • Nuts
  • Peanut butter
  • Marshmallows
  • Chewing gum
  • Boiled sweets
  • Popcorn

The HSE also offers guidelines that will help prevent choking incidents.

  • Chop grapes, cherry tomatoes and similar shaped soft fruits into quarters or smaller pieces

"The fruit could otherwise totally block a child's airway in a choking incident," according to the HSE.

  • Children should sit at the table, or sit still, while eating - they are much more likely to choke if they are walking or running around.
  • The HSE also advises that parents never let their child eat in bed, or eat alone at meal or snack times.
  • Skins from sausages or hotdogs should be peeled, and these foods should be cut lengthways into small pieces (at least as small as your child’s small fingernail).
  • Thick pastes like nut butter or chocolate should be spread very sparingly onto bread.

For more information, see the HSE's website.

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