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Hi,

What age did you allow your child to have things like jelly beans, popcorn, hard nuts, gum, etc? I'm concerned about the choking hazard issue, not allergies or healthiness.

Thanks!
Catherine
 

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Popcorn came accidentally... via Auntie and Uncle on a babysitting date. DS was 3 and change I believe, and I was worried but he's always done OK with it. Loves it, actually. Jelly beans at 4 and change--Easter. DS doesn't care for nutz but tried them at 4 and he had his first piece of gum this year at age 5. He swallowed it...


My biggest fear was raw carrots. DS started eating them around 3 1/2 or so and did fine.

Regards,
Em
 

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The "official" recommendation (ie. state licensing for daycares/preschools) is 3 years old.
But I think most children can handle foods like popcorn, hot dogs, raisins, carrots, earlier than. But I'd definitely avoid hard candies and gum because those aren't "foods" that they chew and then swallow; they require a different skill or dexterity with the tongue.
That said, while many kids can handle those foods earlier, there are some who have issues gagging or choking until even later ages. But generally 3 years old is the "safe" age where the majority of kids are able to control their chewing and swallowing and have the ability to grind up harder foods with 2 sets of molars.

My boys all had their 2 year molars by 18 months. My second son was stealing popcorn from my older son by that age, with no problems at all. Both had raw baby carrots by age 2. I've taken CPR many times, and I know that 911's response time here is about 2 minutes max, so I'm totally comfortable giving my children those foods at an earlier age.
But you know your own child best!

- Krista
 

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dd started nuts at age 3. it was a big deal for her as dh & i love nuts. we were more concerned about the allergy aspect than about choking. i think she was eating popcorn & raisins somewhere around 2, 2.5 with supervision. hot dogs- (chicken, nitrate free, etc
) forever- probably around 18 months or so. we cut them lengthwise in quarters. now we cut them lengthwise in 1/2.

now at 3.5, she loves mints! but she holds them in her hand & sucks on them until she's done
 

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six and almost three year old here-neither gets hard candy, both eat popcorn (I watch the youngest closely-make sure she's sitting upright, not walking or lying, etc.) raw carrots I shred into chips, and both get xylitol gum. My youngest knows not to swallow it, and will even keep it out of her hair most of the time.
 

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Quote:
jelly beans, popcorn, hard nuts, gum
Jelly beans, ds still hasn't ever had jelly beans. He'll be 3 in October.

Popcorn he has been eating since he has been 2.

Hard ntus. He doesn't like them but I tried a couple of months ago....he can't chew them up small enough.

Gum. DS doesn't get gum.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by crl
Hi,

What age did you allow your child to have things like jelly beans, popcorn, hard nuts, gum, etc? I'm concerned about the choking hazard issue, not allergies or healthiness.

Thanks!
Catherine
My kids all started with popcorn and such by the time they were three. The gum we started later b/c they would always swallow it. My kids were around six for the gum. My youngest just turned five and he tried gum once recently but just swallowed it.....so we are waiting a little longer.
 

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Popcorn at age 2....nuts at 2 1/2. Watched close at first to make sure she could handle it. I'd recommend starting with softer nuts first...for us that was cashews.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Bauhinia
nuts at 2 1/2. Watched close at first to make sure she could handle it. I'd recommend starting with softer nuts first...for us that was cashews.
Yep, we started with cashews too. Again, my second son was about 18 months, taking them off his brother's plate.
 

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My ped always said 4 years, so that is what I went by. Hot dogs I let them have, but I cut them up in teeny pieces first. No gum for years (I hate gum) and those blasted doritos - I always bit the pointy ends off!
 

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My youngest was eating popcorn at 2 yrs old. We eat it almost nightly in our house.
I always cut hot dogs up for my kids when they were really little. I've heard you should cut them up until they are 6 years old because the throat widens I guess by that age enough so it can't get lodged in there. But both of my kids ate whole hot dogs in the bun by age 4. I was a bit stricter with my oldest child and didn't allow hard candy at a young age, however, my youngest is 4 now and has had suckers since the age of 2.
As far as nuts go, my kids don't like them.
 

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My son was eating popcorn around 1.5, I think. He's had raisins and grapes since before a year, veggie dogs since 1-1.5, nuts since before 2, raw carrots since babyhood, jelly beans and hard candy (rarely) since before 3. If candy wasn't unhealthy I would have let him have jelly beans before 2 and hard candy around 2.
I let him have Spree chewing gum just starting 2-3 mos. ago and he is 3.5 now.
He's never come close to choking on anything.
 

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Man, I feel terrible!! My 2 almost 3 yo dd has been chewing gum for a long time and we (occasionally) have popcorn too. And hard candy. I don't keep nuts around but she has had them at grandmas. Ds has been chewing on a cold carrot for teathing but only when I'm holding him. Man I havent really been careful at all. I'll be watching more closly from now on.
Thanks!
 
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