Get Up & Grow: Healthy Eating and Physical Activity for Early Childhood - Directors/Coordinators Book

Choking risks for toddlers and young children

Page last updated: 21 April 2011

Children can easily inhale or ingest food, and their small airways are easily blocked. Children should sit down whenever they are eating, and their eating should be supervised. Particular food items pose greater choking risks to young children, and extra care should be taken with these foods.

Foods to be careful with include:

  • hard food that can break into smaller lumps or pieces
  • raw carrot, celery and apple pieces, which should be grated, finely sliced, cooked or mashed to prevent choking
  • nuts, seeds and popcorn
  • tough or chewy pieces of meat
  • sausages and hot dogs, which should have the skin removed and be cut into small pieces to prevent choking.
Hard lollies and corn chips also present a choking risk, but these should not be offered in the setting as they are 'sometimes foods'.