The theme for National Poison Prevention Week is “Children Act Fast…So Do Poisons.” Since 1961, each year the third week of March is proclaimed as National Poison Prevention Week. However this isn’t the only week that you need to think about poison prevention.
According to Safe Kids Worldwide, every minute of every day, a poison control center answers a call about a young child getting into medicine, resulting in almost 500,000 calls per year to local poison control centers.
As part of the Risk Watch Program, every year elementary schools within the Lake Stevens Fire District are visited by Everett Community College Nursing Students who discuss poison safety and prevention.
The children are shown how closely medicine and candy can look alike; and how some things we eat and drink can look like cleaners or items that could cause someone to be poisoned, if consumed.
Lake Stevens Fire, Safe Kids Snohomish County, and Everett Community College Nursing Program would like to remind you how to prevent poisonings around the home with children:
• Keep cleaners and other toxic products out of reach of children. Consider using child safety locks on cabinets.
• Keep medications up and out of the reach of children, even vitamins. Vitamin gummies have become very popular among children, and if too many are taken they can be toxic.
• Ensure that purses and handbags are out of reach of children and be aware of any medications or makeup you may be carrying around.
• Install carbon monoxide alarms near sleeping areas and on every level to prevent CO poisoning.
• Ensure that the toll-free Poison Help Number is posted by the phone in your home and added to your cell phone: 1-800-222-1222. You can also put the number on your refrigerator or another place in your home where the babysitters and caregivers can see it. Remember, the poison help number is not just for emergencies, you can also call with questions about how to take or give medicine.
Visit the Safe Kids Snohomish County website or the Lake Stevens Fire website to obtain a Home Safety Checklist to discover what else you can do to increase the safety in your home.
If you have any questions regarding poison safety, please feel free to contact Lake Stevens Fire Public Educator Jennye Cooper at 425-212-3062.