March is National Poison Prevention Month, an issue that might be more common than you think.
Did you know that someone calls the U.S. poison control center about every 12 seconds? Because of this, poison control centers help millions of parents and caregivers each year.
Read on to learn about the most dangerous household products and how you can prevent poisoning.
What to Know
Here’s what you should know about poison:
- Anything can be poisonous, even water, when used in the wrong way, by the wrong person, or the wrong amount.
- You can be poisoned without swallowing something. Poisoning can happen through the skin, eyes, lungs, and mouth.
- Most cases of childhood poisoning can be prevented with proper safe storage practices.
What to Watch For
According to the Children’s Environmental Health Network, these are the top 10 substances poison control gets called about:
- Cosmetics and personal care products—hand sanitizer, deodorant, and nail polish remover
- Pain-relieving medicines—both over the counter and prescription
- Foreign bodies—toys and coins
- Medicinal creams—acne cream and hydrocortisone cream
- Vitamins—especially chewable vitamins that taste good
- Plants—both indoor and outdoor
- Household cleaning products
- Anti-allergy medicines
- Pesticides and insect repellants
- Dietary Supplements, herbals, and homeopathic remedies
What to Do
Childproof your home by safely storing these potentially poisonous items:
- All pharmaceuticals and medicine—including over-the-counter meds, supplements, and vitamins
- Laundry and cleaning supplies—tide pods, Windex, bleach, etc.
- Tobacco and e-cigarette products—especially liquids containing nicotine
- Batteries—especially button batteries found in key fobs or musical greeting cards
- Household chemicals—antifreeze, pesticides, insect repellents, etc.
- Anything that contains alcohol—alcoholic beverages, hand sanitizer, mouthwash, etc.
- Oils and flammable liquids—gasoline, fragrance oils, essential oils, engine oil, hairspray, nail polish remover
Although common symptoms of poisoning include nausea, pain, vomiting, confusion, trouble breathing, and seizure, they don’t have to be present before you seek help, especially when it’s concerning a child.
If you’re concerned about something your child got into, don’t hesitate to call 1-800-222-1222, go to https://poisonhelp.org/help, or visit Texarkana Emergency Center for an evaluation.
Disclaimer: As a service to our readers, Texarkana Emergency Center and Nutex Health state no content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinicians.