Choking, also called airway obstruction, is the leading cause of death for infants under the age of one due to unintentional injury. Children cannot breathe normally because food or objects, (e.g. small toy parts or food such as hot dogs or popcorn) block their airway or items become wrapped around their necks (such as string toys or ribbons) and get in the way of their breathing.
It is estimated that as many as 900 infants whose deaths are said to be Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS or crib death) each year are found in positions that may cause suffocation, often on their stomachs, with their noses and mouths covered by soft bedding.
- Place an infant on his/her back on a firm, flat crib mattress in a crib that meets national safety standards.
- Take out pillows, comforters, toys and other soft items from the crib.
- Never hang anything on or above a crib with string or ribbon longer than 7 inches.
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