According to the U.S. Poison Control Centers.. "A child is accidentally poisoned every 30 seconds!
And more than 50% of all poisoning occur at HOME children under 5 years of age."
Each year thousands of children are poisoned by common household products
such as insect sprays, cleaners, paints, bleach, perfumes and medicines.
Is your child at risk? You must learn how to keep your child safe from these
harmful chemicals and prevent the risks, because any of these poisonings
can be prevented.
The first step in preventing unintentional poisoning is to keep common household
chemicals and medicines out of sight and out of reach of children. Store
chemicals, cleaners and medicines in locked cabinets and on higher shelves.
Special toddler locks are available for kitchen cabinets.
Reading and following the instructions on the product labels before use
will protect you and your child. Mixing chlorine bleach with such chemicals
as ammonia or acids such as vinegar or drain openers can create a toxic
chlorine gas or chloramine. Know what is toxic in your home and label it
Follow instructions of medication carefully and ask your pharmacist for
child-proof containers. Never take medicine in front of your children or
tell them that medicine is "candy."
There are a number of indoor and outdoor plants that can be poisonous to
children. Check with your local library for books on poisonous plants and
then remove them from your household.
The use of "Mr. Yuk" stickers on all your poisonous products is
a good educational tool for children. Children should be instructed never
to touch a container with a Mr. Yuk sticker on it.
Always be sure that your chemicals are stored in their original containers.
Never put chemicals in food or drink containers. Chemicals, such as anti-freeze,
which is sweet to the taste and a lovely shade of blue, resembles some of
the drinks on the shelves today.
An essential medication to have in your home is syrup of ipecac. This syrup
is a medicine which is used to cause vomiting in children and adults in
the events of poisoning. This syrup is about $2.50 a bottle at your local
Some pharmacies also stock poison first aid kits. These kits contain syrup
of Ipecac, activated charcoal and Epsom salts. You would use these products
only after seeking professional advice as to whether to induce vomiting
NEVER give Ipecac syrup, activated charcoal or Epsom salts or anything else
to treat your child unless you have spoken to a poison control center, your
physician or hospital emergency room first.
Finally, discuss poison proofing with grandparents and any caregivers of
your children, such as your baby-sitter.
PPSI has developed information on this important subject for your education and safety. Please review all of this important information, particularly if you have young children. It could save your life or the life of someone dear to you. Select from one of the options below to learn more.
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Date of Last Update: 07/27/12