What Happens If You Swallow A Staple? You Won’t Believe it!

what happens if you swallow a staple

There were many staples scattered on my office table. Suddenly a fast wind comes from the window, which makes these staples angry. One of the staples dropped in a cup of tea. I drank this tea and swallowed this staple too. After that, I felt a little difficulty in breathing or swallowing. I felt something sharp in my throat. 

Oops, I remember those scattered staples. Now the staple is stuck in my throat! What will they do in my sensitive throat? I am afraid, panicked, and confused. How can I take it out?

If you have also swallowed a stapler pin, then you should read this post to know the signs, and how to handle a swallowed staple inside you.

What happens if you swallow a staple? Swallowing a staple may cause no harm. It can easily pass away from your body through stools. However, an open staple may hurt your esophagus, puncture your GI tract, or cause internal bleeding. In this case, an ENT doctor may suggest the proper treatment after performing an X-ray or CT scan.

If you swallow a staple, what will happen? Fortunately, swallowing one won’t do any internal damage, but it won’t be pretty. To know the activities of a staple inside your body, keep reading.

What Happens If You Swallow A Staple

Swallowed staple, depends on two situations:

Safe Scenario

In this case, a swallowed staple passes from your gastrointestinal tract without hurting it. Generally, such staples are closed or opened a little bit.

It would be a safe and lucky situation for you. Such a staple would cause no health issues for you. It would just pass away from your body. Here you have no need to get worried. As the storm has gone away from your door without destroying your house.

Worse Scenario

The other situation is fairly unusual. In this situation, the eaten staple attaches itself while passing through its way. It may be somewhere along with the sensitive parts of your food system. It may hurt your GI tract, esophagus, or the walls of your stomach. In such a situation, you have to visit your doctor immediately.

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Fortunately, the human body has a very well developed ability to pass-through

many sharper, larger, and dangerous things than that of a staple.

What Happens If You Swallowed Staple Accidentally

Imagine, you are drinking green tea. Accidentally, you swallow a staple dropped from a tea bag inside your cup. Now you are worried about what will happen?

If you have swallowed one staple, it is unlikely to cause you any harm. As it will safely pass through your GI tract. Just by ending up your feces. You’ll even dump it out without feeling it.

However, if you suffer discomfort in your chest or abdomen, you should go for a medical check-up immediately.

What Happens If You Ate A Stapler Pin

Oops! Humans are prone to having accidents. What exactly happens if you ate a sharp pin of the stapler?

It depends on the condition of the stapler pin. Because a close stapler pin causes no more problems. In adults, it will pass away from your stools. But an open stapler pin may hurt your intestines while exiting from the stomach. In such a case, you should go for a proper medical check-up. Where the doctors perform surgery or endoscopy to remove it.

What Happens If A Child Swallowed A Staple

Have you ever read a story where a child swallowed a staple? And a doctor had to be called? Before you panic, here’s what happens if your child swallows a staple?

Open staples may cause blockage, internal bleeding, and piercing. Doctors will see the inside of your child by performing an x-ray. After that, he will be able to remove it with some treatment. In the case of a child, you should prefer a medical check-up for her/him. 

what happens if a child swallows a staple

However, if your child is alright. Don’t worry! The swallowed staple may pass away in stools. You should just keep an eye on any type of unusual signs.

Can You Die If You Swallow A staple?

Staples are made of iron. Which acts as a sharp needle. But it is important to know, can you die if you swallow a staple?

No, a swallowed staple can’t kill you. It can hurt your oesophagus and gastrointestinal system. That results in a severe infection. Fortunately, it is curable and you can come out of this panic situation safely.

The risk created by the pin will depend on where it is located? Is it close or open? 

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Apparently, there is no one answer to such questions as it is dependent on the nature of the stapler pin, the person swallowing it. The only way to be 100% sure is to run a test on a volunteer.

What Happens If A Stapler Pin Stuck In Your Throat

Staplers pins are hazardous for your body parts. That is exactly when they are stuck in your throat. If it remains stuck in your oesophagus, you may face drooling, pain, and swelling on your neck. It can also hurt your oesophagus and cause bleeding in the throat or gums. As a result, you may feel difficulty and pain in eating, swallowing, or drinking. 

You should immediately go for a medical checkup. Never try to handle it with home remedies. Because an open staple may need to be treated by an ENT Doctor. He/she will perform an endoscopy by using a camera to extract it.

Are Stapler Pins Dangerous In Food Packagings

Many companies are using stapler pins for food packaging. For example, they are common in tea bags. As these pins are made of thin and sharp metal. So it becomes dangerous while using such food items. Children are more likely to consume these staples.

The sharp ends of these staples may puncture the soft tissues. Which may cause serious infection and internal bleeding. To avoid the incidents of swallowing these staples, many health organisations are requesting to use some other alternatives to pack the food items. Adhesive tapes are good alternatives to pack these foods in paper bags.

How To Know If You Swallow A Staple

The problem can be easily resolved if you are clear about whether anyone has ingested a staple. But if you didn’t spot someone swallowing a staple, you should be familiar with the expected results. It happens when you fail to recognize the swallowed item. 

Following are the symptoms that may develop after swallowing a staple:

  • Feeling uncomfortable in eating or swallowing
  • Drooling Or excessive saliva
  • Pain in chest or throat
  • Abdominal pain
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Internal bleeding

What To Do If You Swallow a Staple

When you observe the above signs after swallowing a staple, you should go to the nearest emergency. After knowing your medical record, your doctor will perform an x-ray to find the location of the staple. If such an X-ray fails to detect the location of this foreign object, then you have to go through some tests, or a CT scan to find the exact location of the stapler pin.

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Mostly, adults can be monitored to check if the staple will remove by itself. However, some cases need instant medical treatment. Which may be endoscopy or esophagoscopy. Your ENT surgeon will remove it with some specific instruments or a head mirror. There are rare chances of surgery in such cases.

What Happens If You Swallow Staples By Drinking Water

Stapler pins are made of iron and zinc compounds. When you boil water in galvanised containers, the stapler pins from this container dissolve in water. If you drink this water, zinc coating on this thin metal will cause harmful effects on your digestive system. You may suffer issues in your respiratory system. If these pins are dissolved (metal dust) in boiling water, their small amount will be toxic for your health. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What Happens If You Swallow a Metal Staple?

Usually metal is sharp material. By swallowing metal staples, its sharp ends can puncture the soft tissues of the oesophagus. Which may cause internal bleeding of the mediastinum. Plus it can damage the gastrointestinal tract. 

What Happens If a Toddler Swallows a Staple?

If this staple succeeds to cross the GI tract of a toddler, it will be easily removed from the toddler’s body in his/her stools. Although metal staples may be removed without creating a big issue. But it may be stuck in the GI tract or food pipe. So all these sharp objects should be kept away from the reach of toddlers.

What Do I Do If My Child Swallows a Staple?

Don’t panic if your child is alright. Just give him a glass of water. After going down this water, ask him/her to eat a piece of bread. It will be removed from the stool without hurting the soft tissues of your digestive system.


In the above post, we addressed the question, “what happens if you swallow a staple?”

By giving the guidelines for diagnosing, monitoring, and treating the swallowed stapler pin. Moreover, we pointed out the harmful effects of stapler pins attached to food items and tea bags. It may be toxic to human health.

Stapler pins are part of food packaging items. So people are prone to swallow these staples while eating or drinking tea. Luckily, the human body is capable of passing away these foreign objects. But treatment is always better than cure. So take care of your health by following precautions.

James Randolph

Hey, James is here with you. This blog is a powerful online resource to help you get instant answers to your superstitious beliefs, facts, and the reality of myths. Knowledge is your inner guidance system, and this blog empowers you to update, refine, reorganize and enhance your communication system. If you know well you can surely discuss facts with evidence. So, stay with us and be a master of what happens around you!

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