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Poison Prevention in the Home

June 10, 2008 - 7:30am
 
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Poison Prevention in the Home

Did you know that a poisoning incident is reported to a poison control center in the United States every 13 seconds?

In 2005, US poison control centers reported over 2 million unintentional poisonings. Children have faster metabolic rates and smaller stature, that coupled with their natural curiosity and desire to put everything in their mouths, puts them at a significantly greater risk for unintentional poisoning. About 50% of all exposures occur in children younger than age 6.

More than 92% of all poisoning exposures occur in the home, and involve everyday substances including medicines, vitamins, dietary supplements, cleaning solutions, cosmetics, and other personal care products. Household safety tips from the —Poison Experts— at the Central Texas Poison Center can help you prevent a poisoning in your home.

In the Kitchen

  • Keep all products in their original containers and out of reach of children.
  • Install child safety latches on all drawers or cabinets containing harmful products.
  • Store harmful products away from food.
  • Keep emergency phone numbers near the phone, and make your name, address and phone number available in case a babysitter or friend has to call.

In the Bathroom

  • Keep medicines in original containers with child-resistant caps.
  • Regularly clean out the medicine chest.
  • Keep medicines, sprays, cosmetics, fingernail preparations, hair care products, etc., out of reach of children.
  • Install child safety latches on all drawers or cabinets containing harmful products.

In the Garage

  • Keep all products in their original containers.
  • Lock up all harmful products and keep out of reach of children.
  • Keep original labels on all containers.

RESOURCES:

American Association of Poison Control Centers
http://www.aapcc.org

Safe Kids Worldwide
http://www.safekids.org

CANADIAN RESOURCES:

BC Health Guide, British Columbia Ministry of Health
http://www.bchealthguide.org/

Sick Kids
http://www.sickkids.ca/



Last reviewed January 2008 by Rosalyn Carson-DeWitt, MD

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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