It is very important to be aware of toxic substances and the effect they may have on your child. Children are naturally curious. They often put things in their mouths and taste things as a way of exploring the world. Many things around the home can be poisonous. Children are not always turned away from things that smell or taste bad like adults are. That’s why children need you to keep them safe from being poisoned. Many products in your home can poison or seriously injure your child. Medicine is the most common source of poisoning in children. If your doctor has said to give medicine to your baby, read the label and measure the medicine every time you give it to your baby.

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What can cause poisoning?

  • Medicine and Vitamins – Including iron pills, nerve pills, codeine, heart pills, pain relievers, cough and cold medicine, antibiotics and birth control pills.
  • Plants – Including common indoor plants such as philodendron and dieffenbachia.
  • Cosmetics – Including cologne, perfume, aftershave lotion and nail polish remover.
  • Home Cleaning Products – Including bleach, oven cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, furniture polish and drain opener.
  • Pesticides – Including insect spray and mouse poison
  • Paint and Paint Thinner
  • Gasoline
  • Antifreeze
  • Alcohol
  • Cigarettes

What can I do to keep my children safe?

Keep dangerous products out of sight and out of reach from your child.

  • Lock up your medicine and cleaning products.Other dangerous products that should be locked up include camphor, pesticides and iron supplements. Just a few strong iron pills can kill a child.
  • Keep all cigarettes, butts and ashtrays away from children. If your child swallows just one unsmoked cigarette or two cigarette butts, he or she could get sick.
  • Do not use cleaning products when children are close by. Many children are poisoned with a home cleaning product while a parent is using it. For example, a child might eat oven cleaner while their mother is cleaning the oven.
  • Keep products in their original containers. Make sure they are clearly labelled.
  • If you move them to another container, your child could eat or drink a poisonous substance without knowing it.
  • Keep your young child away from the dishwasher. Automatic dishwasher detergent can cause burns to your child’s mouth or throat.
  • Learn to identify poisonous household plants.
  • Keep herbal medications and natural remedies away from children. These can be just as dangerous as prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications.

What about child safety caps?

Some products have child-resistant safety caps. These have saved some children’s lives but, child-resistant safety caps are not always childproof. In fact, many children can open them. Keep all dangerous products safely out of sight and out of reach or locked up.

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