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KiDs’ C SAFETY Choking Hazards hoking is among the leading causes of accidental death and injury for infants and children, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Most of these incidents involve food, coins and toys, with more than 50 percent of those cases involving foods. It’s important to know what presents the greatest risk of choking and how you can protect your children. THE rISKS You might be surprised at what young children can choke on. According to the AAP, choking hazards include: • Coins and coin-sized lithium batteries. • Buttons, pins, earrings, stones and tacks. • Toys with small or removable parts. • Toys small enough to fit entirely into a child’s mouth. • Small balls or marbles. • Small hair bows, barrettes and rubber bands. • Pen or marker caps. • Refrigerator magnets or magnets found in children’s games. • Pieces of dog or cat food. • Balloons or balloon pieces. • Chewing gum or hard or sticky candy. • Foods like grapes, hot dogs, raw carrots, peanuts, popcorn, chunks of meat or cheese, nuts and seeds. Keep potential choking hazards off the floor and out of reach of young children. When buying toys, make sure to pick toys that are the right age group for your children, which are made according to safety standards that should protect against choking. KEEP AN EYE ouT Besides keeping potential choking hazards away from young children, keep a close eye on children while they’re eating, and make sure the food pieces are cut small enough to not be a danger. Kids shouldn’t play, walk, run or lie down with their food in their mouths. Teach them to chew their food well and not eat too fast. Learn the Heimlich maneuver so if a child does start choking, you know how to respond. These are different for babies and young children than for older children, so make sure you know them both. If a child swallows a magnet, Safe Kids Worldwide recommends seeking immediate medical attention. Swallowing magnets can lead to abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. In addition to choking hazards, be aware of other suffocation risks. Keep plastic bags out of reach of children and tie up the cords attached to window blinds, including moving cribs, beds and furniture away from the windows. prepare for a Sledding adventure metal blades will work like ice skates, balancing riders’ ashing weight on two metal runthrough the ners. These sleds can work snow in a well during icy conditions or with hard-packed snow. one-horse open Toboggans can fit multiple sleigh. Winter holidays are made people, which can increase all the more merry with the the fun factor and downhill speeds. Saucer-style sleds are addition of some outdoor recreation. Sleighs and sleds good for one or two people. Foam liners on some saucers are par for the Christmas can absorb shock for riders, course, especially when a making those downhill bounty of snow is in the bumps a little easier on the forecast. Sledding has been part of backside. Keep in mind that snowy celebrations for ages. sleds with steering mechaSledding is a fun-filled activ- nisms are easier to control, which can equate to safer ity, but it can be made an even better time, and a little sledding. safer, if revelers learn a little more about it. layer up It is best to dress in layers when going sledding Even if Sled StyleS it seems warm at home, it Sleds come in many difmay be colder and windier ferent styles, each with its at the top of hills. Sweating own advantages. Sleds with when it’s cold out can D increase a person’s risk for hypothermia. According to experts at Timberline Trails, a person who works up a sweat and comes in contact with ambient air when taking a break will feel an immediate chill. This is called evaporative danger, and can be remedied by dressing in layers and trying to stay dry. allowing them to compact the snow, which should make for a smooth ride. Invest in a helmet Choose safe hills, such as Sledding requires the use those that are free of bare of a helmet. At high speeds, spots, holes, trees, and a blow to the head can cause obstructions, and do not end a concussion or worse. abruptly at a road. Hills with a long, flat areas at the end make for easy, safe stopping. let otherS go firSt Wait until some sledders have already gone downhill, Safety firSt Put safety first when sled- ding. Sled during the daytime so visibility is better. Keep arms and legs on the sled, and only sled feet-first, advises the National Safety Council. By keeping these guidelines in mind, sledders can make sure this popular winter activity is as safe as it is fun. Attention Businesses You CAn Advertise Here!