3 Home Hazards Every Parent Should Clean up This Fall
News As the weather turns and you begin to plan for indoor activities, it’s also a good time to look around your home with an eye on safety.
Start with the household cleaning products you use every day. Many pose the risk of poisoning if they inadvertently fall into the hands of children. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports more than 300 children are treated in the United States every day, and two die as a result of poisoning.
1. Detergent pods
A study conducted by the American Cleaning Institute revealed 61 percent of parents are storing laundry packets in sight or in reach of children. These packets are attractive to infants and toddlers because they are soft and colorful and resemble candy, toys and teething products.
Children who eat detergent packets are at elevated risk of danger because of the concentrated levels of chemicals in the packets. Keep products out of sight, in their original container with the original label intact and immediately put them away in a secure location after use.
During the first three-quarters of this year, about 1,000 children each month under the age of 5 ingested, inhaled, or were exposed through skin or eye contact to single-load laundry packets, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers. Poison help is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at 1-800-222-1222.
2. Medicine cabinets
Up and Away says about 60,000 young children are treated in emergency departments each year after taking medications on their own. Unfortunately, pills can look like candy. Store medicines out of reach and out of sight of kids. And be on the lookout for wandering hands searching through purses, bags, or coats, particularly on travel days and when guests are visiting.
3. Button batteries
Once every three hours a child in the United States is treated after swallowing a button battery, according to Safe Kids Worldwide. Be aware of items that may contain these coin lithium batteries, including key fobs and greeting cards and keep them out of harm’s way. Whenever possible, select batteries sold in child-resistant safety packaging.
As you prepare for the chill of November, take a moment to put dangerous products up and away from children and follow FDA-approved drug disposal guidelines to rid your home of unwanted meds. Keep each other safe at home.