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Household Safety: Preventing Choking


Putting things in their mouths is one of the ways that babies and small children explore their worlds. Choking is usually caused by food, toys, and other small objects that can easily lodge in a child's small airway — anything that fits can be a danger.

Pay special attention to the following to protect your kids from choking:

Food

These soft foods, except caramels, can be served if they're chopped into small pieces or peeled if they have skin. Spoonfuls of peanut butter and chewing gum also should be regarded as potential choking hazards.

Toys, Balloons, and Other Small Objects

Be Prepared

If you're expecting a baby or already have a child, it's a good idea to:

Maintaining a Safe, Kid-Friendly Environment

To check your childproofing efforts, get down on your hands and knees in every room of your home for a kid's-eye view. Be aware of your child's surroundings and what could be dangerous.

Completely childproofing your home can be difficult. If you can't childproof the entire house, you can shut the doors (and install doorknob covers) to any room a child shouldn't enter to prevent wandering into places that haven't been properly childproofed. Doorknob covers and childproof locks for sliding doors are also great for keeping little ones from leaving your home.

Of course, how much or how little you childproof your home is up to you. Keeping a close eye on kids is the very best way to protect them from injuries.

Whether you have a baby, toddler, or school-age child, your home should be a safe place for your little one to explore. After all, touching, holding, climbing, and exploring are the activities that develop your child's body and mind.

Date reviewed: October 2016


Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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