Small toddlers are known for putting everything they touch into their mouths, and it can be hard as a parent to stop the child from doing this. The problem is that small kids will often swallow things they shouldn't, and coins are a common item. Coins are large enough to choke a child or get trapped in a child's throat or digestive system, but they are small enough to often work their way all the way through. If you believe your child has swallowed a coin, here are several things you should know.
You should get an x-ray to find out where the coin is
To confirm that your child did in fact swallow a coin, you should probably take the child to an urgent care center or emergency room to have x-rays completed. Urgent care centers are ideal for x-rays compared to emergency rooms, because they offer faster services, and the costs are typically lower too. Urgent care centers are also advantageous compared to general doctor's offices, and this is because they offer extended hours and usually have x-ray machines.
After taking the x-rays, the doctor will be able to see for sure if the child swallowed a coin, along with where the coin is located within the child's body. If the coin is trapped in the child's esophagus or passageway into the stomach, it could get lodged in place and have to be removed surgically. If the coin is already in the stomach, it should work its way out naturally.
They will pass through the child most of the time
In most cases, coins that end up in the stomach will pass right through a child's normal digestive system and will come out when the child has a bowel movement. This will normally take around two days or so, but it can take longer in some cases. Anything that lands in the stomach can usually work its way out within a few days. The only time a swallowed coin is really an issue is if the coin gets stuck somewhere and will not move.
If your child swallows a coin or anything else he or she shouldn't have swallowed, a visit to an urgent care center is the easiest and most affordable way to find out if the object in the child's body will be a problem or not. Getting x-rays is a good idea even if your child is not having any strange symptoms, but you should get help immediately if your child is having trouble breathing or is drooling a lot. Contact a business, such as Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home, for more information.Share