Posted Online: March 15, 2012, 11:48 am
National Poison Prevention Week March 18-24
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Press release submitted by Henry and Stark County Health Department.
National Poison Prevention Week is March 18-24.
For the past 50 years, National Poison Prevention Week has worked to educate and inform consumers of the dangers of unintentional poisonings. These efforts have contributed to a significant decline in injuries and deaths.
Back in the 1960s, the number of deaths each year from unintentional poisoning was 15 times greater than it is today. Now there are literally thousands of young people alive today who would have died without child-resistant packaging and other measures that protect children from poisoning hazards.
To further reduce the number of unintentional poisoning deaths and injuries, the Health Department staff recommends that the entire family do its part. Parents should keep items in their original containers and leave the original labels on the products and read labels before use.
Grandparents should use child-resistant packaging and keep all household products and medicines locked up, out of sight and out of reach of young children. Older children should be aware of the dangers associated with poisonings and help their parents keep younger siblings in sight; this means taking them along when answering the phone or doorbell.
In addition to the poison prevention tips above, parents and caregivers should follow these safety tips to reduce the risk of unintentional poisonings.
1. Use child-resistant packaging properly by closing the container securely after each use or, if available, choose child-resistant unit packaging, which does not need to be re-secured.
2. Call (800) 222-1222 immediately in case of poisoning.
3. 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.
4. Always turn the light on when giving or taking medicine so you can see what you are taking. Check the dosage every time.
5. Avoid taking medicine in front of children.
More than 2 million poisonings are reported each year to the Nation's poison centers. Among the potentially toxic household products referenced in calls to the poison control centers were:
* Personal care products, including baby oil and mouthwash containing ethanol;
* Cleaning substances, including drain openers and over cleaners;
* Over-the-counter pain relievers - including ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and aspirin - and cough and cold medicines;
* Hydrocarbons, such as lamp oil and furniture polish; and
* Adult-strength vitamins and supplements containing iron.
The Health Department staff notes, while significant strides have been made in poison prevention, every day there are new parents, grandparents and childcare providers who may not be aware of the potential for poisonings.
For more information on Poison Prevention Week visit our website at www.henrystarkhealth.com or find us on Facebook at Henry and Stark County Health Departments.