Preventing Choking

Topic Overview

  • Don't drink too much alcohol before eating. It may dull your senses, and you might not chew food properly or might try to swallow too large a portion of food.
  • Take small bites. Cut meat into small pieces. Chew your food thoroughly.
  • Do not give popcorn, nuts, or hard candy to children younger than 4, and supervise older children when they eat these foods. Cut hot dogs and grapes lengthwise.
  • Do not give young children small objects that may cause choking, such as marbles or jacks.
  • Look for age guidelines when selecting toys for children.
    • Do not let your child play with a toy if he or she is younger than the recommended age for the toy.
    • The safest toys for small children are at least 3 cm (1.25 in.) around or 6 cm (2.25 in.) in length.
  • Keep balloons and plastic bags away from any child who may put them in his or her mouth.


ByHealthwise Staff

Primary Medical Reviewer William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine

Specialist Medical Reviewer David Messenger, MD

Current as ofMay 23, 2014