hard candyOff the top of your head, what would you guess is the top choking hazard for kids? It's something almost all kids love, something they get loads of around the holidays, something sweet little old ladies can't help slipping them. The top choking hazard for kids is hard candy. According to the Centers for Disease Control, they're the most common culprit in non-fatal choking incidents.

Hot dogs are still dangerous and are more likely to be fatal. But those non-fatal choking incidents are still pretty darn scary. What else is on the list? Do you dare find out?

After hard candy, it's other candy like gum, then meat, bone, and fruits and vegetables. So a quick glance at this list will tell you that if you strike candy off from your kids' lives on account of their being a choking hazard, they may counter with a request to save them from the broccoli and Brussels sprouts as well.

But seriously, what do parents do with this information? How do we prevent kids from choking on, well, everything? The American Academy of Pediatricians recommends you supervise your kids every time they eat anything. Make sure they stay seated and chew slowly and thoroughly. Even candy -- and that's why I suspect candy tops the list.

Kids typically eat candy at parties or while playing. Candy is an informal, non-meal kind of food. Do you really want to be that mom who makes her kid sit down to eat an Everlasting Gobstopper when all her friends are out riding bikes? Well ... maybe you do. I'm starting to understand those paranoid "sit down and eat that lemon ball" parents.

Do you make your kids sit down to eat everything, even candy?

 

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