News | Published August 16, 2013

Food to blame for more children choking

It has been known that kids can choke on foods that they regularly eat such as fruits, vegetables, candy and hot dogs; however, a recent study released by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) looked at just how frequently choking occurs in children, and one of the biggest culprits is food.

The study looked at food-related nonfatal choking in the United States from 2001 to 2009 for children 14 and younger. The average age of children seen for choking on food was 4 ½ years old, and almost 40 percent of choking was seen in children less than 1 year of age.

Results from the study found that more than 50 percent of choking cases were caused by the following foods:

  • Hard Candy (15.5 percent)
  • Other Candy (12.8 percent)
  • Meat (12.2 percent)
  • Bone (12 percent)

Other high-risk foods that were found to cause choking in children included hot dogs, seeds, nuts and grapes.

I recommend that parents become certified in first aid and choking treatment so they are prepared to help anyone who chokes, especially their young children.

Also, it is very important for parents to supervise their kids when they eat and make sure they are consuming foods that are appropriate for their age. Ask your pediatrician for help to determine what types of food are recommended for your child to eat.