What to do when your child sticks something up her nose

Last night while the wee tot was eating, something seemed to really catch her attention. I was trying to do the dishes, so hadn’t been using my mommy-observational skills, but just knew. I peaked around the corner and saw that she had stopped eating and was doing something pretty special with her finger in connection with her nose. Yeah, she’s really into picking her nose right now (and, yes, tasting it- eeeeeeuwwwww), so figured she was just exploring.

But, then, a couple of minutes later, she was still doing the same thing and was making a weird noise. I figured it was time to stop with the dishes and find out what was really going on.

I checked her out, pulled her finger out of her nose, and asked her what was up. The problem is the wee tot can’t talk yet, so her answer was, “noooes.” I translated her nnnning to be about her nose and took a look.

Yup. She had a bit of carrot bit stuck up her nose.


I decided NOT to panic, I mean, kids shove stuff up their noses all the time, right? I remember while I was teaching preschool we had one little guy that put everything up his nose – peas, beads, halved grapes… But, he was old enough to reason with, so I could usually convince him to blow his nose, dislodging the wonderous item.

No such option here.

I got out the trusty flashlight, gently laid her down and investigated closer. In the process, the babe fell in love with the flashlight – which was a GREAT distraction – and I got out the tweezers. I carefully got in position and, amazingly, dislodged the bit! Then, the minute the wee tot figured out what was going on, she totally freaked out, took a deep breath to scream, and sucked that piece of carrot right back up her nose.

By this point, the husband wasn’t so excited about how things were going. So, I figured a nice warm bath would calm the babe down, and get her out of the hubs’ hair. I also had visions of getting the babe to suck some water up her nose, which might pop that carrot out. I filled the bath, got the daughter in the tub and kept her covered with water. Yeah, I might have encouraged some face-in-water kicking and playing to encourage some water up in that nose, but, no such luck.

While I was drying the wee tot off I had a flash of brilliance! The big bulb syringe! I got it out and after getting the babe all warm and cozy in her jammies, quickly got out that syringe, snuck it up her nose, and sucked! I just knew I’d solved the problem – seriously, carrot bits can’t resist the suction power of the bulb syringe, right?!

No carrot bits.

If she’d only sneeze we’d be set! I pretended sneezing, I pretended blowing my nose, and I even put a bit of pepper in the palm of my hand and waved it under her nose, to which she made a funny face and tottered away.


By this time, the husband was beside himself having to listen to the babe endure all my carrot removal methods, the wee tot was exhausted, and I was out of ideas. So, I gave her a warm bottle, got her in the crib, and shut the door.

I figured I’d be checking on her every four minutes all night to make sure she was still breathing.


Right before I tucked myself in for the night, I checked on her and she was breathing just fine. Then, I fell asleep and didn’t wake up until 7am when her small little voice called out, “daaaada.”

While I was getting her changed, she sneezed out a big ol-wad of snot – and some chunks of carrot!


Healthful Mondays: CPR

Yesterday I was able to catch up on my CPR and First Aid training. This wasn’t a just-for-fun thing, I need to be certified for teaching, so every couple of years, I get to reacquaint myself with the art of chest compressions and back blows. I’m not going to lie – it’s not the super-funnest way to spend a day, but it IS essential information that everyone should know. EVERYONE.

CPR, or Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, is a lifesaving skill that helps keep oxygenated blood pumping through the body when and if the body can’t do it for itself. When someone suffers a heart attack or serious injury, knowing and performing CPR could save a life. When working with kids, the constant concern of a wee tot choking on a grape or needing medical attention after enduring a fall can sometimes be overwhelming. So, staying fresh with first aid skills are also a must.

The American Heart Association has made a couple of changes to the way CPR is started and the original A,B, C or Airway, Breathing, Chest has been changed to C, A, B or Chest Compressions, Airway, then Breathing. This means that instead of starting with checking the airway and then giving rescue breaths, that you begin with checking for signs of life then go right into chest compressions, checking the airway, then rescue breaths. So, not really an amazingly huge change, but it’s a bit different. Here’s the thing. The most important first step is to CALL 911! These people are professionals and aren’t going to lose precious time trying to remember what they’re supposed to do FIRST. Give them a call and then go right into chest compressions, which will help keep blood pumping through the body, hopefully saving the injured person and preventing brain damage.

It’s always a good idea to know what to do in an emergency situation. Choking is one of the greatest hazards for small children. The best way to avoid a choking situation is to not give a child items that could cause choking such as grapes, candy, raisins, gum, loose change, and stopping your child from running with items in their mouth.Basically, there are many many items that are choking hazards, so unless you’re going to watch your babe like a hawk, knowing the basics about back blows and abdominal trusts is a must.

There are lots of locations that will help you learn these valuable skills. Check your local community college or hospital for classes on CPR and First Aid training. It doesn’t cost much to take a class and then you have important knowledge that is beneficial for years to come. Even if you’re not a parent, knowing what to do when someone appears to be having a heart attack – the leading cause of death in adults – is awesome. Especially if it’s a loved one that suffers one right in front of you.

Healthful Mondays: How to stay cool

© Sarah Lipoff

With the forecast saying it’s going to be another day with record high heat, I’m ready to find the coolest spot possible to hang out for the day with the babe. BUT, that’s not going to happen. We have preschool today and not only will the kiddies be toasty, but us adults, too.

The best way to beat the heat is to avoid it. For those that aren’t able to turn up the air conditioner or spend the day at the mall, there are simple ways to stay safe in extreme temperatures. Start by keeping kids indoors or in shady areas and limiting high energy activities to 15-minute bursts. This helps reduce the potential of heat stroke and some super sweaty kids. Also, make sure to slather on the sunblock if you are planning on more than 30-minutes outdoors. No one wants a sunburn on top of heat stroke.

It doesn’t matter what age you are, when the heat is high, you must stay hydrated. That means get out those colorful cups or water bottles and drink up. Water is the best, but if you’re not a huge fan – or your kiddo isn’t having it – water down some juice, herbal tea, or sports drink. For every 90-pounds an individual weighs, they should be tossing back at least 5-ounces of liquid every 20 to 30-minutes.

Along with staying hydrated and taking it easy in extreme heat, enjoy some water play. It doesn’t matter how old you are, get out the spray bottles, hose, kiddie pool – whatever you got – and soak up some water. Surrounding yourself in cool water helps keep your internal temp low, which makes the high heat tolerable (and maybe a little fun).

You can also indulge in my favorite hot-day helper – popsicles! They are easy to make yourself and are quite healthy! Hitting the kitchen and concocting some fun and super-cold popsicles is a great way to teach your child about cooking, spend some quality time together, and create a tasty treat!

No matter what you choose to do on a hot day, keep the communication rolling. Ask kids and adults around you how they’re feeling and keep tabs on their behavior. Heat stroke can happen quickly and no one wants to make a trip to the ER, which totally ruins the day.

Stay cool!