It’s no secret that toddlers are curious. Exploring and playing with interesting objects, even though they’re not designed to be toys, comes naturally to them. But even the most fun toys can be safety hazards. A mum in China’s Guangdong Province learned this the hard way when her daughter accidentally swallowed her diamond ring! What would do if your toddler swallowed an object like this?
Toddler swallowed an object — her mum’s diamond ring
Reports say that the two-year-old had asked to play with the ring. Shortly after her mum had fallen asleep, the toddler started to cry, pointing to her mouth to say she had swallowed the ring.
Her worried mum rushed her to the Zhuhai Hospital of Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine. Doctors at the hospital managed to fish out the ring, which measured 2.35cm by 2.05cm, after a 30-minute operation.
This is not the first operation done after a toddler swallowed an object. So the hospital is urging parents to be extra careful not to let their children play with small objects.
Has your toddler swallowed an object? Here’s what you can do about it
According to SingHealth, if your child or toddler swallowed an object, it will usually pass down the intestines over time. But it’s still important to consult a doctor as soon as this happens.
And it’s not just swallowing that can cause choking hazards! Even inhaling objects poses dangers. When they’re laughing or talking while they are eating or lying down, kids can accidentally inhale bits of food and other objects.
You should consult your child’s paediatrician if any of the following happens:
- If your child swallowed a button or disc battery. There have been far too many alarming cases of children accidentally swallowing batteries — like the toddler whose trachea and oesophagus were damaged by a battery and the two-year-old girl who died after swallowing a button battery.
- If they swallowed a sharp or pointed object. A one-year-old once swallowed a safety pin while playing in their home.
- They are unable to swallow food or their own saliva. Swallowing foreign objects can make eating or drinking uncomfortable.
- Your child refuses to eat anything. Because their throat feels tight or blocked, it could affect their appetite or eagerness to eat.
- Their drooling is consistent. The possible blockage of their throat can cause a buildup of saliva that stimulates drooling.
- They experience throat pain for over 24 hours. The blockage can cause pain over time.
- Your child complains of chest or abdominal pain. Once the object starts to pass through the digestive tract, swallowed objects can cause more and more pain.
- You notice blood-tinged vomiting. Swallowed objects can cause injury or scarring, so watch out!
- If they turn blue or lose consciousness, bring them to the doctor IMMEDIATELY. This could mean the object is obstructing their windpipe and they cannot breathe.
You can also call for emergency assistance in Singapore through the Emergency Ambulance hotline 995 or non-emergency hotline 1777.
Sources: The Straits Times, SingHealth SG
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