Every year, hundreds of children are treated in hospitals and doctors offices for ingesting poisonous objects. It’s not JUST objects marked poisonous, either. Everyday items in your home, such as household cleaners and medicines, can be poisonous to children as well. That’s why it is incredibly important to know what steps to take and how to prevent accidents from occurring.
Lock everything up and out of the way
Medicines, toxic chemicals, detergent pods and even your gummy vitamins and melatonin should be as far out of reach and locked away as possible. Make sure that they’re in their original packaging and aren’t in view. Sometimes, because it looks tasty doesn’t mean that it IS tasty!
KNOW the number for poison control
We all may know 9-1-1 by heart, but having the number for Poison Control saved in your phone, written and posted on your fridge, or memorized by heart isn’t a bad idea either. Put the nationwide poison control center phone number, 1-800-222-1222, on or near every telephone in your home and program it into your cell phone. Call the poison control center if you think a child has been poisoned but they are awake and alert; they can be reached 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call 911 if you have a poison emergency and your child has collapsed or is not breathing.
Read the labels!
Follow label directions carefully and read all warnings when giving medicines to children. If anything is unintentionally ingested, make sure you’re able to read all relevant information to Poison Control when you call them!
If you don’t use it, lose it
Old medicines, expired medicines, or any toxic chemicals or items in the home that are no longer being used, toss them. To dispose of medicines, mix them with coffee grounds or kitty litter and throw them away. You can also turn them in at a local take-back program or during National Drug Take-Back events.