Choking is when an infant can't breathe because food, a toy, or other object is blocking the airway (throat or windpipe).
A choking infant's airway may be completely or partially blocked. A complete blockage is a medical emergency. A partial obstruction can quickly become life threatening if the infant loses the ability to breathe in and out sufficiently.
Without oxygen, permanent brain damage can occur in as little as 4 minutes. Rapid first aid for choking can save a life.
Choking in infants is usually caused by inhaling a small object that they have placed in their mouth, such as a button, coin, balloon, toy part, or watch battery.