Baby breathing


This is in response to the question raised by Cs regarding babies being able to breathe and swallow at the same time. Yes, babies up to 3-6 months of age are able to breathe while swallowing milk, a feat that we are no longer capable of. The best online explanation of this can be found here.

If you take a look at the picture of an adult larynx, you will notice that it is located on top of the trachea and below the pharynx. In babies, the larynx is located much higher in the throat so that the milk they drink actually drips down the sides and into the esophagus, leaving the entrance to the trachea free for the passage of air. This also explains why babies can only make limited sounds. Later in life, the larynx descends leaving us with the epiglottis as our guardian against choking and the ability to make more diverse sounds.


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