Choking & Strangulation


Grown ups know the tricky ways of cords and strings. We know that no headphone cord will remain untangled for long, how to use window pulls, and not to sleep in our necklaces. Even if it all seems so obvious to us, it’s surprising the ways children can get tangled up. The article below will help you take care of the dangers before your child discovers them.


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    • Take a look at all blinds, shades and curtains in your home. Anything with cords should be replaced as both looped and non-looped cords present a strangulation risk to young children. Here's a bit more about why.
      • Vertical and roll-up shades have continuous loop cords. If these treatments are not properly installed and maintained, the loop can become loose, creating a strangulation hazard.
      • Horizontal blinds and Roman shades have inner loop cords. If cord stops are not properly installed and adjusted, then the cord can become a loop hazard when pulled from the blind.
      • Even nonlooped cords present a risk, because those cords can become looped (either tangled or when trying to secure them out of a child’s reach) or a child can wrap them around their necks.
    • If you can't install cordless window coverings, contact the Window Covering Safety Council for a free kit that can help make your windows safer.

    • Never tie strings to a pacifier or toy, and make sure that none of your child’s toys have cords or strings longer than 12 inches. For more on toy safety, go here.
    • Be sure to remove necklaces, purses, scarves, bibs, or clothing with drawstrings when your child is playing or sleeping. Also, do not allow young children to use drawstring bags as backpacks. 
    • Avoid the decorative posts (finials) on the corners of beds, as your child’s clothing or toys can get caught on or wrap around them. 
    • The most common cause of playground-related deaths is strangulation from clothing, strings or ropes. Do not allow children to add these things to playground equipment.

Did You Know?

About once a month a child dies from window cord strangulation.

- U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

Thank you

Content developed in association with:

Nationwide Childrens Hospital

For more information, go to Our Role.