HEALTH

34 children per day treated for choking on average

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A new study published in the journal Pediatrics indicates that choking remains a leading cause of injury in small children, especially those younger than four.

Researchers say that, on average, 12,000 kids under the age of 15 are treated on average for choking every year. It equates to about 34 children being taken to the emergency room for food-related choking per day.

The study concluded that hard candy is the biggest culprit of choking in children; 16 percent of kids in the survey choked on a sweet treat. Other types of candy, bones and meats are also high on the list of choking hazards.

Warning labels should be put on foods that are considered a high choking risk, the researchers say.

Especially dangerous for some kids are hot dogs, which are in a category all to themselves since they accounted for 3 percent of all choking incidents in the study.

"The hot dog is the perfect size to block the airways in a young child," Dr. Gary Smith of Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus says.

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