- Half of the 2 million calls to Poison Help Number in 2011 involved children ages 5 and under. In fact, 9 out of 10 poisonings occur at home.
- Every day, over 300 children in the United States ages 0 to 19 are treated in an emergency department, and two children die, as a result of being poisoned. It’s not just chemicals in your home marked with clear warning labels that can be dangerous to children.
- Everyday items in your home, such as laundry detergent pods, household cleaners and medicines, can be poisonous to children.
- Keep medicines and toxic products, such cleaning solutions, in their original packaging where children can’t see or lock them up.
- Know the number. Put the nationwide poison control center phone number, (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. Call 911 if you have a poison emergency and your child has collapsed or is not breathing.
- Read the label. Follow label directions and read all warnings when giving medication to children.
- Don’t keep it if you don’t need it. Safely dispose of unused, unneeded, or expired prescription drugs and over the counter drugs, vitamins, and supplements. To dispose of medicines, take them in at a local take-back program or during National Drug Take-Back events.
Every 8 Minutes a Child Goes to an Emergency Room for Medicine Poisoning
Safe Kids Pennsylvania issues alert: 3 out of 4 ER visits for medicine poisoning are due to kids getting into parents’ or grandparents’ medicine
Safe Kids Pennsylvania offers these tips for families:
- Keep all medicine up and away when young children are around, even medicine you take every day.
- Be alert to potential hazards of medicine stored in other locations, like pills in purses, vitamins on counters, and medicine on nightstands.
- Even if you are tempted to keep it handy in between doses, put medicine out of reach after every use.
- Choose child-resistant caps for medicine bottles, if you’re able to. If pill boxes or non-child resistant caps are the only option, it’s even more important to store these containers up high and out of sight when caring for kids.
- Take the time to read and follow the label before taking or giving medicine.
- Program the nationwide Poison Help Number (800) 222-1222 into your phones.