Some of the most texturally challenging foods like peanut butter on soft bread are significant choking hazards because they are harder to chew and swallow. When peanut butter gets lodged in someone's throat, it conforms and blocks the airway. That is precisely what happened to the three-year-old who is the 235th real-life saved by Dechoker®.
When LaBreeska heard her toddler struggling to breathe, she knew she had to act quickly. She quickly grabbed the Dechoker® from her diaper bag, and used it with just one try, and saved her little boy. She recounts the terrifying moments:
"My 3-year-old was choking (like could not breathe) on a pb&j. He had stuffed too much in his mouth (as usual, even though I warn him not to), and it got stuck in his throat. I heard the horrific sound of him struggling to breathe. I saw the look of sheer horror in his eyes. I knew this wasn't a normal getting choked up on something. This was the big one that we were all terrified of. I ran and grabbed our Dechoker® from the diaper bag. (We keep it there, so we always know where it is, and it travels with us). I had him spit out what he could, then put it up to his mouth and pulled back hard and quick. It sucked it right out in one try, and I immediately heard him gasp and take his first clear breath. We both started bawling. The Dechoker® saved my baby's life today. It all happened so quickly. I could've lost him just as quickly. There's no way I could've gotten that thick peanut butter sludge out of his throat. Thank you!!! Thank you to my husband for purchasing it ‘just in case.’”
These "just in case" moments can happen quickly, and it's important to be prepared if they do. We highly recommend having the Dechoker® nearby as an added first aid item.
A spoonful of peanut butter can form globs that clog the throat and block the windpipe. This can also stick to the lining of the throat, which can make it difficult to breathe. This can also happen with other sticky foods like fruit snacks, cheese cubes, caramels, jellybeans, and gummies.
To reduce this risk, we recommend serving peanut butter thinly smeared between slices of bread. The sandwich should then be cut into ¼-½ inch pieces. It also is not recommended to eat peanut butter by the spoonful.
It is essential to discuss the risk of choking with your children and foods that cause choking, which can pose more of a threat than household objects. We recommend working to develop good eating habits, and taking the time to explain these habits to your children using the following suggested phrases: