Take steps to poison-proof your home
March 15-22 is National Poison Prevention Week. This week was established in 1961 to highlight the dangers of poisonings and how to prevent them. In 1959, 503 children younger than 5 died from poisonings in the U.S. In 2005, 41 died nationwide.
“There have been many safety interventions in the last 40 years,” said Phyllis Goldie, supervising public health nurse at the El Dorado County Health Services Department. Child-resistant safety bottle caps have saved thousands of lives. Poison prevention campaigns have increased awareness of the dangers of pesticides, detergents and other household items. Goldie recommends that families assess their own homes and behaviors for safety concerns.
n Keep the number (800) 222-1222 on or near all phones (poison action line).
n Keep medicine and cleaning products out of reach of children and in locked cabinets.
n Always keep products in the containers they came in.
n Never keep cleaning products, gasoline, antifreeze, paint and paint thinner or lighter fluid in something you would use for food or a beverage.
n Do not store food and household cleaners in the same cabinet.
n Never call medicine “candy.”
n Do not take medicine in front of children; they love to do what adults do.
n If you are in the middle of taking medicine or using a cleaning product and you need to answer the door or phone, take it with you.
n If you are a grandparent, be sure to keep your medicine and vitamins where your grandchildren can’t get to them.
n Keep things like makeup, perfume, cigarettes, alcohol and vitamins where children can’t reach them.
For more information, visit: http://www.calpoison.org or call (415) 502-8605.