Children are often poisoned by household products — here’s what you should lock away

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Dishwashing liquid, silica gel sachets and bleach are most commonly swallowed by children. (Photo: GALLO IMAGES/ GETTY IMAGES)
Dishwashing liquid, silica gel sachets and bleach are most commonly swallowed by children. (Photo: GALLO IMAGES/ GETTY IMAGES)

Children are curious and will often explore the world with their senses - especially taste. As a result, home could be a dangerous place if poisonous substances are ingested. 

Here's what you can do to avoid life-threatening accidents.

THINGS TO LOCK AWAY

  • Acetone
  • Acid B Battery acid
  • Battery (button type)
  • Benzine
  • Caustic soda
  • Chlorine for pools
  • Diesel fuel
  • Dishwasher powder
  • Disinfectant
  • Drain cleaner
  • Firelighter
  • Furniture oil
  • Petrol
  • Hydrochloric acid
  • Iron tablets
  • Paraffin
  • Metal cleaners and polishes
  • Mothballs
  • Oven cleaner
  • Paint (oil)
  • Paint remover
  • Thinners
  • Turpentine
  • Varnish
  • Toilet cleaner
  • Washing powder
  • White spirits

EMERGENCY DO'S AND DONT'S

DO

Get the child to hospital immediately.

DON'T

Make the child vomit.

Give the child anything to eat or drink.

 THINGS TO LOCK AWAY

  • Bleach
  • Detergent
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Dye (hair or fabric)
  • Fabric softener
  • Fertiliser
  • Fluoride tablets
  • Hair perm lotion
  • Hair straightener
  • Hydrogen peroxide

EMERGENCY DO'S AND DON'TS

DO

Give the child milk or water immediately (half to full cup).

DON'T

Make the child vomit.

 THINGS TO LOCK AWAY

  • Aspirin
  • Cold and flu medication
  • Cough syrup
  • Glue (contact type)
  • Insect repellent
  • Insecticide
  • Oral medicines
  • Nail varnish remover
  • Paracetamol
  • Rat bait
  • Sedative
  • Snail bait 

EMERGENCY DO'S AND DON'TS

DO

Give the child activated charcoal tablets to absorb the substance.

Infant dose – 10 g in 50 to 100 ml water.

Child dose – 20 to 50 g in 100 to 300 ml water.

Adult dose – 50 to 100 g in 200 to 500 ml water.

THINGS TO LOCK AWAY

  • Alcohol
  • Ammonia
  • Cosmetics
  • Deodorant
  • Glue
  • Perfume
  • Shampoo
  • Vitamins

EMERGENCY DO'S AND DON'TS

DO

Give the child milk or water immediately (half to full cup).

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR CHILD HAS BEEN POISONED 

  • Call a poison info centre first.
  • Take along the container, label, prescription, remaining tablets or the substance swallowed when you take your child to hospital.
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