March is Poison Prevention Awareness Month
The third week in March is observed as National Poison Prevention Week each year. “Children act fast… so do poisons!” So, now is a good time to identify where potential accidental poisonings can occur in and around the home and how to prevent them.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, things that you can do to decrease the chance of your children being poisoned include:
n Keep all chemicals and medicines locked up and out of sight.
n Use child-resistant packaging properly by closing the container securely after each use or choosing child-resistant blister cards, which do not need to be re-secured.
n The American Academy of Pediatrics no longer recommends that you keep a bottle of ipecac syrup at home to induce vomiting.
n Be careful of look-alikes, including household cleaners that look like Gatorade and other drinks and could be ingested if not secured away from your children.
n When products are in use, never let young children out of your sight, even if you must take them along when answering the phone or doorbell.
n Keep items in original containers.
n Leave the original labels on all products, and read the label before using.
n Do not put decorative lamps and candles that contain lamp oil where children can reach them. Lamp oil can be very toxic if ingested by young children.
n Always leave the light on when giving or taking medicine. Check the dosage every time.
n Avoid taking medicine in front of children. Refer to medicine as “medicine,” not “candy.”
n Clean out the medicine cabinet periodically and safely dispose of unneeded and outdated medicines.
n Cleaning detergents and food should never be stored together.
n Identify poisonous plants in your home or yard and place them out of reach of children or remove them.
Remember that poisons are everywhere. They can be found in just about any room of the house—inside and out. Take the time to “poison proof” your home, because “Children act fast….so do poisons!”