National Poison Prevention Week

As National Poison Prevention Week comes to an end (March 18-24), it is important for all households with young kids or animals to keep their “homes safe for children by securing medicines, chemicals, and pesticides in locked cabinets.” In lieu of yesterday’s recall of the Safety 1st Cabinet Locks, as parents we need to be vigilant of the safety precautions we take in our house to keep our children safe.

The items that absolutely should be locked up because they are the most dangerous to ingest are: medications, insecticides, antifreeze and other automotive chemicals, cleaning products, nail-care products and alcohol. Even the child-proof caps on medicines and vitamins are not fool-proof. Some can falter and some kids and smart enough or persistent enough to figure out how to open them (I have a bottle of vitamins that my 2 year old son was able to open – for some reason the child-proof cap is not child-proof – I was there so luckily it was not a safety concern for us.)

More than 2 million poisonings are reported every year and that is just way too high. More than 90% of these incidences happen at home and can be prevented by following these storage tips:

  • Store household products and medicines in locked cabinets that a child can’t reach.
  • Do not store them over stoves or ovens.
  • Keep medicines in child-resistant containers.
  • Every household product should be in its original container with the label intact. In the event of a poisoning, you will need to give the poison-control center vital information listed on the container and on the label.

Always keep the poison control hotline on hand: 1800-222-1222. They are open 24 hours a day 7 days a week so if someone in your house does accidently ingest something, call them immediately. If your child is not breathing unconscious or has collapsed, call 911!