Poisoning is the fourth biggest cause of unintentional injury after road traffic injuries, fires and drowning.
More than 45 000 children die each year from unintended poisoning.(i)
Children are curious and explore their world with all their senses, including taste. As a result, the home and its surroundings can be a dangerous place when poisonous substances are inadvertently ingested – every year millions of calls are made to poison control centres when this happens and thousands of children are admitted to emergency departments. Most at risk are children aged 1 year and also teenagers aged 15 years.
The most common poisoning agents include pharmaceuticals, household products (e.g. bleach, cleaning agents), pesticides, fuels, poisonous plants and bites from insects and animals. (i)
Educational Kids Games - Poisoning Prevention
With any illness or medical emergency, of course prevention is always better than treatment. Children often understand much more than they are able to articulate (knowledge base is more comprehensive than language) so we recommend educating children as young as six months old about the dangers of poisons and potentially dangerous items and substances around your home and other places they frequent.
For young children and people with special needs, the use of Safe Spot Danger Stickers can help to remind them which objects, substances and areas are potentially dangerous and should not be touched.
All chemicals and objects such as batteries and other potentially poisonous items (including plants) should be kept out or reach and sight of young children. If you are able to lock dangerous items away, it reduces the risk of injury and poisoning.
Could It Be Poisoning? What To Do...
If you suspect someone you know has ingested poison of any kind - here's what you should do:
1: Contact emergency services immediately (Check your countries emergency phone number)
2: Place the person at risk in recovery position until help arrives.
3: Do not induce vomiting or try to flush the poison out with fluids of any kind.
4: Supervise the person until medical help arrives.
Each country has a different number to call to access information about poisoning. You should always call your local emergency service number, and not a poison hot line, since poison hot line services are information providers only and cannot dispatch medical assistance.
Below you'll find the numbers to call for information about poisoning in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. If you're in another country, we recommend you research (google) to find out the number of your local poisoning hot line. Information is likely to also be available online.
If someone has collapsed, stopped breathing, is fitting or is suffering an anaphylactic reaction, DIAL YOUR LOCAL EMERGENCY NUMBER for an ambulance IMMEDIATELY. Do not ring the Poisons Information Centre in an emergency.
If your country is not listed below, we recommend you research (google) to find out the number of your local poisoning hot line.
Australia: Dial 000
New Zealand: Dial 111
U.S.A: Dial 911
Accessing Information Via Poison Hotlines and Online
Below you'll find the numbers to call for information about poisoning in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. Information is likely to also be available online. If your country is not listed below, we recommend you research (google) to find out the number of your local poisoning hot line.
Australia: Poisons Information Centre - Call 13 11 26 (24 hours - 7 days)
New Zealand: Poisons Prevention and Education - 0800-POISON (0800 764 766) http://www.poisons.co.nz/
United States of America: U.S Poison Centre -1-800-222-1222 http://www.poison.org/