Posts Tagged ‘candy’

Hot dogs, serious choking risk for kids

Monday, February 22nd, 2010

hot-dog-2It’s a common thing to do. Take a hot dog and slice it up into small pieces for toddlers to eat. Usually, the little ones can easily pick up the pieces with their small fingers and put them into their mouths.

But according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), hot dogs are the food most commonly linked to fatal choking among children. Because they are cylindrical or circular in shape, hot dogs and those cut-up pieces can wedge tightly into the child’s airway, blocking it completely.

And there’s another problem. When you squeeze a hot dog, it compresses and then expands when you let go. So the hot dog piece works like a plug or a cork in the child’s airway.

Today the AAP issued a new policy statement on choking hazards and children. Other foods besides hot dogs can also be risky. They include hard candy, peanuts and other nuts, seeds, whole grapes, raw carrots, apples, popcorn, chunks of peanut butter, marshmallows and chewing gum. Whenever you give your baby solid food, be sure the pieces are very small and that he has swallowed what was in his mouth before.

For more, read the March of Dimes article Starting Your Baby on Solid Foods. On Friday, I’ll write about the choking hazards of coins and toys. Stay tuned.

Halloween safety tips

Monday, October 12th, 2009

39191668_thbIt’s hard to believe, but Halloween is right around the corner. My husband and I are both off from work today, so we’re headed out to buy decorations and mums for the front stoop. Our little pumpkin is too young for trick-or-treating, but it’s not too soon for us to learn how to enjoy this holiday safely with her. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has some helpful Halloween safety tips on their website. Click here to check them out.

Got a ton of Halloween candy?

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

All the kiddies went out on Halloween and loaded up their Trick-or-Treat bags with yummy sweets.  I’m sure your dentist was thrilled.  While it’s fabulous fun and down right delicious, holding on to all that tasty candy can be oh so tempting and terrible for the tooth, not to mention all of our chubby cheeks.

Maybe rather than gobbling up goodies throughout the day for the next few weeks, we should select a limited amount for ourselves and give the rest away.  Let your children keep their favorites, then teach them to share and treat others by donating the rest to a soup kitchen or food bank.  It’s a good lesson to teach them, and their teeth and your waistband will thank you for it, too.

Pregnant Mommies: Not so fast on that Halloween candy!

Friday, October 31st, 2008

It’s Halloween and the kids will be bringing home LOADS of goodies. It’s okay for mommies to treat themselves every once in a while during pregnancy. But don’t overload on the fun-size candy bars and the candy corn.

A recent study in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology shows that moms who gained more than 40 pounds during their pregnancy were twice as likely to have babies who were too large, compared to other moms. In fact, out of 40,000 moms in the study, 1 in 5 of them had gained too much weight during their pregnancy.

So what’s the harm in having a large baby, you ask? Well, let’s start with what that means for moms. Moms who gain too much weight during pregnancy are at increased risk of facing serious health complications such as gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension and preeclamspia.  Also, a pregnant mom who gains too much weight is more likely to encounter difficulties during labor and childbirth, such as a baby stuck in the birth canal, vaginal tearing, c-section, a longer hospital stay and other recovery complications.

Babies born to overweight or obese moms face their own special health risks, too. These newborns are at increased risk of being born prematurely, having certain birth defects and needing special care in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Some studies even suggest that babies born too big are more likely to face obesity in their childhood, which is a growing problem in the U.S.

While you don’t want to go on any “fad diet” during pregnancy, it’s important that you make healthy food choicesWatch our video on healthy food choices during pregnancy.  Talk to your health provider for more nutrition tips.

Image: Juushika Redgrave, Flickr