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Patient Assitance: Poisoning Prevention Guide


Within every home, whether it is a house or apartment, there is a very real and serious threat of poisoning. This is especially true for households with young children and pets that may smell, touch and even eat poisonous items that they come into contact with. Even adults run the risk of inadvertently poisoning themselves if they are not careful. Poison comes in many different forms, and can be inhaled, eaten or it may absorb into the skin when touched. These items may be dangerous on their own or they may become dangerous when combined with other items. They can be found in almost every part of the home, such as the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, and garage. Even spoiled food in the refrigerator and certain types of household plants pose a risk.

Because people feel most comfortable and confident in their homes, unintentional poisoning occurs more frequently than most realize. Many times this comfort may cause people to become careless and as a result accidents may happen. According to the Center for Disease Control, unintentional poisoning is the cause of roughly 87 deaths daily. To prevent this from occurring it is important for people to understand what items in the home are dangerous. They must also make efforts to keep poisonous items away from their children and educate them about the risks associated with hazardous materials. By reading this resource, people will not only learn about the basics, but they will also learn how to prevent poisoning through storage and proper usage techniques. Readers will also learn who to call and what to do if they, or a loved one, is exposed to a poison.


A variety of items in the home can present a poison threat. In fact, it may be difficult to recognize some poisonous items for what they are, particularly ones that are not chemical in nature. For this reason it is important to understand what the basics are when it comes to poison, such as what items in the home are actually dangerous. One way to understand them is through research and study of statistics.


From household cleaners to chemicals for the yard, the presence of poisonous substances in and around the home is unavoidable. For this reason it is crucial that everyone understands how to prevent accidental poisoning from occurring. When poisons or potentially hazardous items are not used or stored properly they become an even greater threat. For people who take multiple medications, improper storage and use can result in confusion and taking the wrong medication or too much of a certain dosage. This type of poisoning can be problematic for seniors or people who are visually impaired. Failure to store and use poisonous items is particularly dangerous to children and pets in the home. Perishable food that is left our or prepared improperly can also pose a food poisoning risk.

Storing Poisons

Using Poisons Safely

Children and Poison

Food Poisoning

Pets and Poison


In the event that someone is poisoned, swift action could mean the difference between life and death. People should make certain that everyone in the home knows what to do in the event of an accidental poisoning. This means having a phone number to a nearby poison control center in a location that is visible to everyone in the house. It is also important that everyone understands whether or not they should or should not administer first aid, as well as what needs to be done. This may vary depending on the type of poisoning and what the poison control center advises.

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