A new study by CE Safety has revealed choking is fast becoming one of the biggest causes of accidental deaths for under-five
I don't know about you but when it comes to parenting, choking was one of my biggest fears when I became a mother. So much so, that I completed a paediatric first aid class with The Nursery to ease my nerves.
Costing just €50 a course, I found it invaluable and even a few years later, I still feel confident in knowing what to do if I am ever faced with an emergency.
A new study by CE Safety has revealed that choking is fast becoming one of the biggest causes of accidental deaths for under-fives, with data revealing that 1571 people have died in the past four years due to choking on either food or small objects.
Statistics show forty children under the age of five were rushed to hospital every day in the UK after choking or swallowing something dangerous, while fourteen of those kids died in the last four years.
Food has been proven to be the most likely cause, but small objects like toys posed a huge risk too.
Following the study, CE Safety, they have compiled a list of the deadliest food items that pose a choking hazard in children.
The twelve food items that are the biggest choking risks for young children include:
Due to it's gloopy and pasty texture, bread has become one of the top causes of choking as it can easily get stuck in a child's throat. For this reason, we advise toasting bread until children master chewing food properly.
Raw vegetables are a huge risk to young children who haven't mastered chewing properly so it advised to steam or boil vegetables until they are soft.
Hard sweets are incredibly harmful to young children as they don't dissolve nor can they chew them properly. Children under five should not be given hard-boiled sweets.
Grapes are one of the most well known choking hazards due to their shape and size. They can easily block a young child's airways so we always recommend parents and caregivers to cut grapes into quarters. This also includes cherry tomatoes.
Chicken on the bone
Foods like chicken wings and chicken legs pose a huge risk to children due to small bones. Children should be served boneless meats and chicken until they have mastered mealtimes.
Popcorn comes in a hard crunchy texture posing a potential choking hazard, as some children may struggle to chew properly. Uncooked kernels can easily lodge in a small child's throat, blocking their airways.
Nuts and seeds
Just like popcorn kernels, nuts and seeds cannot be chewed properly until children have back molars. Until then, they should be avoided.
Not something I can imagine parents giving to children but it's made the list due to its sticky texture, meaning it can get stuck in their airways easily.
Due to its hard texture, cheese should be grated or thinly sliced to make it easier for children to chew.
Apple skin poses a huge risk to babies, toddlers and preschoolers as it can easily get caught in the back of their airways. It is advised to grate apples or to soften them in the microwave before serving.
Often a treat of choice for youngsters, but they actually pose a huge risk. Marshmallows can expand in the throat causing a huge choking risk, especially if a child stuff's their mouth.
And finally, both crackers and rice cakes have a coarse dry texture making them a hazardous food. They can both get lodged in the throat as they cannot be broken down easily.