I am sharing guidelines to avoid choking in children under the age of three years.
Hello everyone. We are almost at the end of the month. I was thinking about what to share for February.
And I was drawn towards sharing something on the children’s safety.
Today in this article, I am talking about Choking and share general guidelines we all can follow to make mealtime more fun and less dangerous.
My daughter will turn seven this year, and I am still worried about her getting choked on food.
It might be a little bit too much on my side, but I am a mom, and I will keep on doing anything to keep her safe.
So often, we come across the news of choking in small children while having meals or snacks.
These accidents are preventable, only if we are more vigilant about how we serve our little ones their food.
Choking is a real hazard to children under the age of three years. Young children should continuously be supervised while they are eating.
This brings us to our first point.
I remember when my daughter was around two years, I was super paranoid when she used to eat her grapes.
They were cut into her bite-size pieces, and I won’t leave the table until she finished eating them.
She used to sit in an upright position while eating.
Playtime And Eating Time
Playing and eating is another way our kids eat. They run around being a ninja or a fairy with food inside their mouth.
It was always a good idea to remind them to finish their food in the mouth and then run.
Also, teaching them to finish the food in their mouth first and then speaking is a good idea.
Eating In The Car:
I confess I am guilty of this one at some point. Especially during the age of three years.
We as moms or parents have errands to run, places to go, and tantrums to handle.
And if we skip snack time, then it usually happens during the car ride.
Now, as I look back, I feel guilty and thankful that things went well.
When we drive, our little bubs are behind snacking.
If something gets stuck in their throat and they get choked, we might not have enough time to get to a safe place and help them.
I feel it is essential to consider this point.
Slipper foods like hot dogs, grapes peanuts, cherries, cherry tomatoes are the ones that can slip into the throat without getting chewed.
It is a choking hazard. We have to make sure they are cut into small bite-size pieces and they get adequately chewed.
It can also happen with dry foods like popcorn, corn chips, nuts, seeds, small pieces of raw carrot, large wads of melted cheese.
Sticky Or Tough Foods:
These include peanut butter, tough meat, uncooked raisins, and other dried fruits.
They can easily get stuck into the throat and block the air passage.
So how do we prevent these accidents? By being more careful and vigilant. Also keeping in mind these guidelines can help.
- Cook food until it is soft enough to cut it through the fork.
Undercooked carrots, potatoes, peas, meat can get stuck in the throat while swallowing. Hence it necessary to cook all the meats and vegetables thoroughly before giving them to young children.
- Cut food into small pieces or thin slices for easy chewing.
Food like grapes, hot dogs, cheese stick or any food for that matter. It is a good idea to cut into kids friendly bite-size pieces so that it is easy to chew and swallow.
- Cut round food into strips.
Hot dogs, cheese sticks, grapes, etc. should be cut into strips before serving them to young children. Stripes are easy to chew and swallow instead of a small disk/round food.
- Cut grapes into small pieces and remove pits, if any.
I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to cut grapes for your little ones.
I know it takes time, but it is always better to spend those few minutes cutting than spending time in agony later.
- Cut cherries into bite-size pieces and remove the pit.
Cherries are another notorious food for choking. With pit inside and being a slippery food, they can slip into the throat without much time to chew or take the pit out.
- Cut cherry tomatoes into quarters.
Cherry tomatoes look small, but they are big for a young child. Their smooth texture make them easy to swallow and get stuck.
It is always better to cut them into quarters before serving.
- Grind or mash and moisten food for young children.
Chunky food, even if it’s cook, poses a risk for choking, especially in young kids. Also, if giving a chunkier puree, the food chunks should be small enough to get swallowed easily.
At times when we reheat the puree, it becomes a little dry. It is essential to add more moisture so that it doesn’t feel too dry and sticky while swallowing.
Sometimes gagging is a result of dry puree.
Whether its meat or seafood, bones should not be in your child’s food for the obvious reasons. They are hard and sometimes sharp for a young child.
At Easy Baby Meals, I strive to make your time feeding your little ones an enjoyable one.
Keeping these points in mind can make mealtimes safer.
If I missed out on something, please go ahead and mention it in the comments.
And if you know someone who might appreciate this article, please go ahead and share it with them.
Till we talk again, have fun feeding your little ones. For more recipes along with tips and tricks, subscribe to our mailing list. You can also follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram.
Book: The Best Homemade Baby Food On The Planet By Karin Knight, R.N. and Tina Ruggiero, M.S., R.D., L.D