How to Prevent Poisoning in Your Home
Updated: Mar 1, 2019
Hey guys, today I want to talk about how to keep your children safe from poisonings at home.
It is unfortunately a very common thing to occur and a frightening number of the calls that the National Poisons Information Service (NPIS) receive are related to children.
It's very important that we as parents keeps our homes safe for our little ones, so I'm going to give you a few tips to prevent poisoning in your home.
1. Ensure all of the medicines or chemicals in your home are stored in childproof bottles. This way, if one of your children do happen to get their hands on it, at least they will struggle to open it.
2. Be mindful never to tell your children that medicine is candy. If your young kids believe that those bottles of pills are candy they will attempt eat them without your knowledge.
3. Be sure to check the labels of any medicines you administer to your kids. As children get older the medicine they can be prescribed by doctors will increase in strength. Checking the label each time will ensure that your child doesn't accidentally receive an overdose.
4. Store all of your medicines and chemicals in cupboards or cabinets that your children cannot get into. Placing a child lock on cabinets close to the ground is also advisable.
5. Ensure that your children cannot move a stool or chair into position under a cabinet in order to open it. It's highly likely that they can, even if you think it's impossible. If you're worried that they can then place a child lock on higher up cabinets too.
6. Store chemicals and other potential poisons in their original containers. The original container was designed with the chemical in mind and is made to prevent accidental spillage or ingestion. It is also important to make sure you never store chemicals in a juice bottle or milk jug. Your children can easily mistake this for a tasty drink and ingest the contents.
7. Never, never mix the chemicals you store in your home. Many chemicals, when mixed, create fumes or go through chemical reactions that can be fatal to human health. Children are especially susceptible.
8. Keep all of your indoor plant decorations out of the reach of your children. There are several indoor plants that can be poisonous when ingested, and children generally taste first and complain later.
9. Make sure to safely dispose of your chemical and medicine containers. This is especially important if there are unused or out of date contents still in the container. If tossed into your inside rubbish bin inside there is a possibility that a small child could get into it and ingest the unused contents. Be sure to take that bag outside and put it into the main garbage bin.
10. If you live in an older house, have your home and your children checked for lead poisoning regularly.
11. If your home is subject to unwanted visitors requiring pesticides ensure that your children are kept well away from the fumes. They are highly toxic and very damaging to human bodies.
12. Ensure the phone number for the National Poisons Information Service is easily accessible.
What are the signs of poisoning?
There are a few symptoms that come when somebody has been poisoned and they're all fairly easy to spot. Be sure to keep an eye out for these symptoms. It's likely that the person will suffering from more than one at the same time.
Foaming at the mouth
If you believe someone to be poisoned it's important to remain calm and immediately call emergency services or the National Poisons Information Service.
If you have to make that call ensure you have the following information on hand. This will make the medical teams job far easier.
The victim's current condition and symptoms, age and weight
How long since the poison was ingested
What they ingested and how much
Your name and phone number
In the past it was recommended to induce vomiting in a poisoning victim but this will not help and may even increase the amount of damage done by the poison.
Especially if the victim is a child. Do not induce vomiting in children who have been poisoned.
If you're worried that you don't know how to safely store chemicals in your home, or you're not sure what all of the warning symbols actually mean then you can take the new COSHH Risk Assessor Certification™.