Do not let your child eat while you are driving. It is a practice for some parents or guardians to drive-thru a fastfood chain, buy food , give to the child, who is usually seating at the passenger’s seat, then continue to drive. Please do not do this. Do not feed a child while the car is in motion especially if no one is with the child at the back seat. This can cause choking in a child.
The size of a child’s airway (trachea, also called windpipe) is the size of his index finger or pointing finger. Imagine if the child is by himself at the back seat, you give him French fries and he is choking. You are driving and no one will help the him at the back. What will you do? This is a very scary thought.
One of the medical emergencies of children is choking. Choking occurs when an object or food becomes lodged in the throat or windpipe, blocking airflow.
I take first aid course every 3 years and update every year. Choking prevention is always focused on. Food is one of the common causes of choking. Here are some tips I want to share with you:
- Do not feed a child while the car is in motion.
- The child should sit up while eating and must be supervised at all times.
- Cut the size of the food smaller than the size of his index finger.
- Food pieces should be no longer than half an inch.
- The kinds of food you give to your child should be age appropriate.
- Do not let a child eat while playing, running or lying down.
- Make sure that the child eats at the table or at least while sitting down.
- If you are able, please enrol in a CPR and first aid course.
Be careful also in buying toys for your child. Do you remember the old 35 mm film canisters for the old cameras? Any toy or its part smaller than a ping pong ball or a 35mm film canister (the size is similar to the size of the throat) can cause choking.
To all parents, guardians and carers, please be more vigilant especially when children are either eating or playing. Choking is scary but is preventable.
Here are some photos of a child for reference to the size of a child’s index finger.