It’s a Saturday morning and you are busy fixing breakfast, getting your 6-year-old ready for his soccer game and throwing a load of laundry in the dryer before you head out the door. You walk in the laundry room for one second. When you get back to the kitchen to finish cooking, you notice that your other 2-year-old has some of the laundry detergent in her mouth. You frantically wipe out your child’s mouth and rush her to the Emergency Room. However, did you know that Carolinas Poison Center handles cases like this 24/7 over the phone for free, giving you immediate peace of mind? Your doctor uses Carolinas Poison Center, too, when he or she needs advice helping patients who’ve come in contact with a ‘poison’.
Everyday products can quickly turn into ‘poisons’ if used in the wrong way by the wrong person or in the wrong amount. About half of the calls to Carolinas Poison Center involve children under the age of six. As you know, children love to explore and put many items they touch in their mouths. The most common items include household products and medication.
Young children are often attracted to household products like cleaners because they are colorful and resemble products they like to drink. Keep household products out of reach of children—store them up high in a locked cabinet.
There are also many similarities between candy and medicine. Remember, young children can’t read labels, and many medicines look like candy to them. Lock medicine up where children cannot see or reach them. Don’t refer to medicine as candy. Also be sure to keep the lines of communication open between you and any other caregiver in your child’s life to make sure your child doesn’t receive an accidental extra dose of medicine.
Calls to Carolinas Poison Center are free and confidential. The highly trained nurses, pharmacists and doctors who staff the Poison Center are available to answer questions about medicine dosage, insect bites, foreign objects swallowed, food reactions and other poisoning concerns ranging from minor worries to full-blown emergencies. These experts answer calls around the clock, dispensing advice and in many cases, even preventing trips to the doctor’s office or hospital. Don’t hesitate to call anytime day or night – 1-800-222-1222. Program the number into your phone! You never know when you might need it.