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The original artical can be found here: http://bomoms.boston.com/forums/Topic4166699-1408-1.aspx

As costumed children head out this Halloween on their annual candy-collecting mission, parents need to be aware of the potential dangers that exist within the contents of a typical treat-or-treater’s goody bag. With children under the age of four accounting for nearly 90% of deaths and 80% of emergency room visits due to airway obstruction injuries, Farley Boyle, founder and executive director of C.H.A.S.E. for Life (CPR, Heimlich, Awareness, Safety Education), a non-profit organization that educates parents in basic life saving skills, offers the following safety tips:

To prevent choking accidents:

Do not let children eat candy while out trick-or-treating. Children tend to get excited and run from door to door. The excitement and movement distracts children from carefully chewing their candy, which can lead to accidental choking incidents.

Empty out the contents of all trick-or-treat bags in a bowl and then store the bags away, out of the reach of children.

Do not let children eat candy until an adult has examined each piece carefully for evidence of tampering.

Do not let children under 3-years-old eat small, hard or round food, especially hard candy. Do not let small children eat food unattended.

Carefully examine any toys or novelty items received by trick-or-treaters under 3-years-old. Do not allow young children to have any items that are small enough to present a choking hazard or that have small parts or components that could separate during use and present a choking hazard.

Before Halloween night, parents should refresh themselves on the basics of Infant/Child CPR and Heimlich in order to be prepared in the event a child is distressed. Free life saving techniques, including a free instructional video are available at www.chaseforlife.org.

“It is important for parents to remember that accidents are just that --- accidents,” Ms. Boyle said. “As parents, we need to take every precaution to keep out kids safe. The best thing to do is to arm ourselves with enough knowledge to stay calm in an emergency; identify the signs of a distressed child, and react quickly to save them. C.H.A.S.E for Life created the 18 minute animated vide “How to Save a Life” that uses creative animation, clever lyrics, repetition and their mascot, “Paddy the Penguin” to teach parents the basics of Infant/Child Heimlich and CPR. Our mission is to educate all parents on how to administer these life saving techniques in order to sustain a life until help can take over. This knowledge can and will change statistics.

From the minute an accident happens until someone calls 911 the clock is ticking. How one reacts in the first 5 minutes of a crisis is crucial because the average ambulance response time in the U.S. is between 7 and 15 minutes. Most people do not know that brain damage occurs due to lack of oxygen to the brain in 5 minutes. Brain death is probable after 6 minutes. Doing something in an emergency is better than doing nothing. You do not have to be certified to save a life. For free Infant/Child CPR & choking maneuver resources, including free printable CPR/Heimlich instructional posters, pocket guides and a downloadable version of “How to Save a Life”, visit www.chaseforlife.org.

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