"Babies are curious little people. Cats are curious too. Curiosity killed the cat - but I don't want this fate for babies" - By Rian T Johnson (me)
At my last visit with Dr.Wong, he warned me of Raychel potentially choking on small items that she will find anywhere and put into her mouth. Even before he warned me of this, I already knew she liked to put anything she would find on the living room floor into her mouth. She would crawl so quickly to a camouflaged piece of dirt, plastic, coin or whatever else the vacuum didn't pick up and would sit still for more than a few seconds quietly looking around for me while sucking on the item (because she's trying to figure out how long this will last until I snatch it from her mouth). How do I prevent this from happening? Well, it means we're constantly tidying up which isn't a bad thing, but it means even more supervision while she's playing which at times, can be challenging especially if you need to go to the washroom. I hate to admit that I've developed a habit of leaving the washroom door open widely so I can take a peek every 15-30 secs on her while I'm washing my hands or brushing my teeth.
This morning, I came across an article in my September issue of Today's Parent with advice/tips on how to cope with babies and choking. I was surprised to see that according to Safe Kids Canada, roughly 291 Canadian kids under 14 are hospitalized and 39 die from choking and suffocation-related injuries! Even more shocking, almost 80% of these recorded incidents occurred to children under 5 years old. I really don't want Raychel to be a statistic so I'm going to do my best and take on some of the precautionary actions the article says.
- Supervise eating time
- Hold off on high-risk foods (hot dogs sliced into small "discs" and whole/half grapes and small candy)
- Reiterate these rules to Dad and other caregivers/babysitters
- Put away hazardous items
- Inspect play area
- Revise my choking first aid skills