Many kids (and many adults) have a habit of eating as quickly as they can.
If the food they’re eating comes in small pieces, they’re probably going to eat handfuls at a time. An Australian blogger recently shared a photo on her Facebook page to warn parents of the dangers of letting their young children eat unsupervised.
Blogger Angela Henderson has degrees in social work, sociology and psychology. Her blog most often centers around her kids, and occasionally parenting lessons she learns along the way. This time, the story she shared wasn’t her own. But when she posted an X-ray photo to her Facebook page, the post ended up going viral with over 24,000 shares.
Angela wrote, “Attention Parents! Do you know what this X-ray is of? A grape! A grape that was lodged in the top of a 5-year-old’s airway today.”
She explained, “This sweet soul had to be operated on under general anesthesia to remove the grape. He is VERY lucky that part of his airway was open or else this could have ended badly.”
Angela ended her post with a warning to other parents, writing, “So please be mindful that not all kids chew their food, are in a rush at school to get in the playground, etc. Please be careful. And when in doubt, just cut the damn grapes, baby tomatoes, etc.”
Angela wrote, “I’m thankful to the pediatrician that shared this and even more grateful to the Mother who gave the consent for this to be shared in order to bring awareness to our community.”
The Dangers Of Choking
Choking is the fourth leading cause of accidental death in children under five years old. While small toys often come with choking hazard warnings, foods don’t! If you have small children, follow these simple tips to keep them safe from choking:
- Supervise your children while they eat.
- Explain to your children the importance of chewing their food before they swallow it.
- For kids under the age of five, cut their food into small pieces.
- For children under the age of two, mash up their food to reduce the chances of choking.
- Make sure your children eat sitting upright at a table. Don’t allow them to eat while they are walking around or in the car.
- Learn how to perform the Heimlich maneuver on small children in case you ever need to use it.
It’s recommended that children under the age of four shouldn’t eat the following foods:
- Hot dogs
- Seeds and nuts
- Chunks of raw vegetables
- Peanut butter
- Whole grapes
- Hard or sticky candy