Every parent knows it can be tough to encourage children to eat healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. What some parents don’t realize is that grapes, small tomatoes, and cherries can be dangerous if not cut properly.
Take a look at the x-ray below. That round shape is a grape blocking the airway of a 5-year-old boy. The kinder-gardener was incredibly lucky that his throat was only partially obstructed, but he still required an operation under general anesthesia to remove the blockage.
A study published in Archives of Disease in Childhood found that food accounts for more than half of all choking hazards in children. Of those, grapes are the most common culprit because they are often the same size as a child’s airway and many parents fail to slice the bite-size morsels. Five separate incidents of grape-choking were investigated in detail, two resulted in the death.
“I’m thankful to the pediatrician that shared this and even more grateful to the Mother who gave consent for this to be shared in order to bring awareness to our community,” wrote Angela Henderson after sharing the image on Facebook.
“Please be mindful that not all kids chew their food, are in a rush at school to get in the playground, etc.,” she continued. “Please be careful. And when in doubt just cut the damn grapes [and] baby tomatoes.”
While Angela’s message is blunt, it’s not wrong. Doctors recommend all parents take the following AAP tips for choking prevention:
- Cut foods into pieces no larger than 1/2-inch.
- Always supervise your child when he/she is eating.
- Make sure kids are seated while eating.
- Encourage kids to chew their food completely before swallowing.
Please like and share this post to help raise awareness about this danger, which is so easily avoidable.