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28th Jun 2021

‘I had become paralyzed’: This is why you never give babies honey

Kat O'Connor

“I had become paralyzed”

There are 101 things parents have to be wary of when it comes to feeding baby and it can be pretty overwhelming at times. They avoid peanuts, certain cheeses, sugary snacks and honey.

Experts advise parents not to give your child honey until they’re over the age of 1. This is because honey can sometimes contain bacteria that produces toxins in your baby’s intestines, which can result in infant botulism, a very serious illness.

It is believed 70% of babies diagnosed with botulism require medical ventilation for approximately 23 days.

One woman has opened up about getting botulism as an infant.

By sharing her story Kelli Tager hopes to raise awareness about the danger of giving your baby honey.

She explained that her mother started to introduce her to ‘real’ foods, including honey, when she was around 6 months old. However, her mother soon noticed a change in her baby girl.

She wasn’t able to swallow her milk and appeared listless. Her parents rushed her to hospital where she received a feeding tube and tracheotomy.

Kelli explained that she couldn’t breathe, move or swallow. “I had become paralyzed from my head (including my eyes) all the way to my feet. My mother says I looked like a rag doll,” she revealed to ScaryMommy.

Doctors struggled to diagnose her at first, but years later realised that it was infant botulism. Kelli explained that nobody was aware of the dangers of honey when she was a child, but thankfully there is more awareness nowadays.

“Now people do know how dangerous it is — that it can kill infants. Now, there’s a warning label on honey that says don’t feed this to children under one years old.

“Now honey is pasteurized so the chances of contracting botulism have significantly diminished — but there’s a still a chance.”

“All I’m asking is you spread the word to your friends, your family, your parent groups, and so forth that feeding honey to a child under one year’s old can actually be fatal,” she urged.

For more information on honey and the risks involved, click here.