March is already promising to be a very active month with Spring season just around the corner and so many other awareness campaigns kicking off, however, this month we want to bring to light the importance of poison prevention. Just in 2017 alone, the 55 U.S. poison control centers provided telephone guidance for nearly 2.12 million human poison exposures.1 That’s about:
6.4 poison exposures/1000 population,
39.1 poison exposures in children younger than 6 years/1000 children,
1 poison exposure reported to U.S. poison control centers every 14.9 seconds.
Medi-station Urgent Care takes poison prevention very seriously, as you may agree that these are very alarming numbers especially that most of the exposures are unintentional or adverse reactions to medications or from harmful chemicals.
Across all ages, 77.0% of poison exposures reported to U.S. poison centers in 2017 were unintentional, 18.9% were intentional, and 2.4% were adverse reactions. Sadly 90% of the poisoning cases occur in the home.
In an effort to reduce these numbers, here are a few tips that we’ve put together as a form of prevention. Each season comes with season related concerns but these here should be implemented year round.
Keep the American Association of Poison Control Centers phone number displayed in your home – 1-800-222-1222 – they are available 24 hours a day.
Never mix household or chemical products together. Doing so can create a dangerous gas.
Never share prescription medicines. If you are taking more than one drug at a time, check with your healthcare provider, pharmacist, or call the toll-free Poison Help line (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center, to find out more about possible drug interactions.
Keep all chemicals, household cleaners, medicines, and potentially poisonous substances in locked cabinets or out of the reach of children. Keep poisons in the containers they came in. Do not use food containers (such as cups or bottles) to store household cleaners and other chemicals or products. These should be stored away from food.
An important factor to keep in mind, harmful chemicals and poisons can be taken in through the skin or inhaled. If you or your loved one is experiencing any or all of the following symptoms make sure to take immediate action:
Call the Poison Center at 1.800.222.1222 immediately. Not all exposures result in instant symptoms, so it is very important to seek timely medical attention. We are open extended and weekend hours in order to best serve you. Come on by our center and let us give you clearance from any serious poisoning concerns.