Shops are bursting with dried fruits and nuts to mark Tu Bishvat, the Jewish New Year of Trees, which will be held next Tuesday night and Wednesday, the 15th of the Hebrew month of Shvat. But the holiday poses dangers, warns Schneider Children’s Medical Center in Petah Tikva. Ever year, babies and small children are involved in choking incidents when small pieces of hard food gets lodged in the trachea.
Prof. Yehezkel Weissman, head of the emergency medicine department at the hospital, said that no child under five years old should be given nuts, seeds and other hard food, and they should not be left within a young child’s reach. If dried fruit is served, it should also not be given to very young children, and and when served they should be cut lengthwise to prevent them from getting stuck in the air tube.