Year after year, millions of accidental poisonings happen in the United States – the majority of them affecting children. A poison is any substance that can harm someone if it is used in the wrong way, by the wrong person or in the wrong amount.

To aid in the  prevention of unintentional poisonings and accidental exposures in and around the home, the following tips are intended for educational purposes and we encourage you to share them with others.  Poisoning prevention is in your hands. Protect yourself and your loved ones.

General Safety Tips

Use National Poison Prevention Week as the time to inspect your entire home for any medicines or household products, such as detergents, cleaning products, pesticides, and fertilizers that may not be stored properly and correct the situation immediately.

Always store medicines and household products up high, away and out of sight from children.

Install safety latches on cabinets used for medicines and household products.

Always teach children to ask first before eating or drinking anything.

Buy products in child-resistant packaging whenever possible.

Keep the toll-free Poison Help number, 1-800-222-1222, near every home telephone and save it on your cell phone. The line is open 24/7, 365 days per year. When you leave your children in a babysitter’s care, ensure he/she knows about the Poison Help number.

What To Do If A Poisoning Occurs

Remain calm.

Call 911 if you have a poison emergency and the victim has collapsed or is not breathing. If the victim is awake and alert, dial 1-800-222-1222. Try to have this information ready:

  • the victim’s age and weight
  • the container or bottle of the poison if available
  • the time of the poison exposure
  • the address where the poisoning occurred

Stay on the phone and follow the instructions from the emergency operator or poison control center.