Curiosity Doesn’t Always Lead to Fun and Games

Much of childhood is marked by increased curiosity and a desire to explore. While we celebrate this aspect of a child’s early years, the fun and games stop when that curiosity leads to the accidental ingestion of chemicals or medicines that are harmful and poisonous.


According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, more than 90 percent of poisonings occur in the home, and children who are less than six years old are the most likely to be poisoned. During National Poison Prevention Week (March 16-22, 2014), it is important to let parents and caregivers know of the potential deadly hazards in every home and how best to help children avoid them.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends the following to parents and caregivers of small children:

In the house, keep the following poisonous products away from children:

  • Painkillers, such as acetaminophen, and similar medications;
  • Cosmetics such as perfume or nail polish, and personal care products such as deodorant and soap; and
  • Cleaning products such as laundry detergent and floor cleaners.

To avoid poisonings when taking care of children, be aware of the following tips:

  • All medicines and household cleaning products should be stored in locked cabinets, out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Never leave young children alone.
  • Do not leave poisons on a counter or in an unlocked cabinet.
  • Never carry something that can be poisonous, such as a medicine, in a purse where children may find it.
  • Safety latches on drawers or cabinets, and child resistant caps on bottles, are helpful in keeping poisons out of the hands of children.

Children act fast. So do poisons. Go to The Poison Prevention Week Council website to learn more about Poison Prevention Week and what you can do to avoid hazards in your home and when taking care of children. 

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