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Another menace 2-year-olds face is choking-both on food and small objects, including toy parts and other loose ends. Even though your child may have a full set of baby teeth (or nearly so), continue to monitor his food carefully. Don't give a child this age hard candies or any small, round, firm foods (such as hot dogs, raw carrots, nuts, grapes) unless well chopped or cooked until soft. Eating while running, playing, jumping, or laughing is perilous at any age.

If your child has an older sibling or plays at an older child's house, keep a careful eye on the toys at hand. Playthings for children age 3 and above often have small parts that your toddler may want to put in his mouth. Also, check his own toys from time to time to ensure that no pieces are coming loose and becoming hazards.

One common toy that can be deadly is the latex balloon. Before it's inflated and after it bursts, this kind of balloon can be difficult to dislodge from a child's throat. Never allow toddlers to blow up balloons; once a balloon bursts or deflates, discard it. Somewhat safer than latex balloons are those made of Mylar. Still, always supervise play with any type of balloon.

All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.

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