Did you know choking is among the leading causes of injury and death in children, as reported by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)? Curious little ones ages 4 and younger are most vulnerable to choking incidents, including those that occur at Houston daycare centers, because putting objects in the mouth is a normal part of childhood development. As they’re learning how to chew and swallow, they’re also exploring the way objects taste and feel.
If your child has choked at a daycare center anywhere in Houston, our Houston daycare injury attorneys at The Button Law Firm can help you get the compensation your family deserves. We fight to get justice for families in cities across the Houston metro area: Atascocita, Bellaire, Clear Lake, Conroe, Cypress, Deer Park, Friendswood, Humble, Jersey Village, Katy, Lake Jackson, League City, Missouri City, Pasadena, Pearland, Richmond, Rosenberg, Spring, Sugar Land, The Woodlands, and Tomball. Call us at 281-857-6116 or fill out a contact form for a free consultation.
Choking on Food at Houston Daycare Centers
Many parents and daycare workers in Houston may be surprised to learn that choking on food kills approximately one child every five days in the United States, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Popular foods that can be difficult for young children to chew, and, therefore, are flagged as high risk for choking hazards include:
- Chunks of cheese or fruit
- Gummy candies or vitamins
- Hard candies
- Hot dogs
- Nuts and seeds
- Raw vegetables such as carrots
- Whole grapes
Choking incidents can also occur at mealtimes when children eat or drink too quickly or use poor posture when eating.
Common Choking Hazards that Houston Daycare Workers Should Monitor
Young children often put non-food objects in their mouths. This is called oral sensory seeking behavior and a way for children to satisfy their curiosity about an object. It can also be a form of self-soothing.
Common objects that Houston daycare workers should be cautious about storing in classrooms and keeping out of the hands and mouths of little ones in their care include:
- Legos and other small toys
- Loose coins
- Pen caps
- Safety pins
- Small batteries
- Small stones or rocks
Houston Children with Special Needs and Choking
Children in Houston who have developmental disabilities or neurologic disorders, or who are on the autism spectrum are at a higher risk of choking because eating and feeding is more challenging for them. They might not have the necessary cognitive skills or behavioral control to thoroughly chew foods and eat slowly, as cited by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Thus, Houston children with the following needs may require additional accommodations such as supervision and hands-on assistance at mealtimes:
- Cerebral palsy
- Down syndrome
- Muscular dystrophy
- Neurological, muscular, and seizure disorders
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
It is important that Houston-area daycares properly educate all workers on these increased choking risks and ensure that teachers are diligent about monitoring children while providing safe accommodations.
How Houston Daycares Can Prevent Choking Incidents
While choking incidents at Houston daycares can be scary, the good news is they are easily preventable with proper supervision and care. Directors and workers at Houston daycare centers should:
- Cut all foods into small pieces for easy chewing and swallowing
- Ensure choking hazards are removed from areas of the daycare that are accessible to young children
- Teach and encourage children about the importance of chewing food completely before trying to swallow
Also, parents can be proactive to keep children safe. When researching daycare centers in Houston, ask how many employees at the childcare facility are CPR-certified. For more tips, download our free 10-step guide to find a safe daycare in Houston.
How The Button Law Firm Is Helping Houston Families After a Choking Incident
Our team of experienced and compassionate Houston daycare injury attorneys at The Button Law Firm is dedicated to advocating for you and your family if your child was seriously injured from choking at a Houston daycare center. With attorneys in Houston, we are ready to listen and fight for families in Atascocita, Bellaire, Clear Lake, Conroe, Cypress, Deer Park, Friendswood, Humble, Jersey Village, Katy, Lake Jackson, League City, Missouri City, Pasadena, Pearland, Richmond, Rosenberg, Spring, Sugar Land, The Woodlands, and Tomball. Our attorneys at The Button Law Firm are recognized on the prestigious Texas Super Lawyers list, and we can help guide you after a traumatizing incident involving your child. We work on contingency, meaning we don’t charge you or collect any upfront fees to get started on your case. Call us at 281-857-6116 or fill out a contact form for a free consultation.