Rise in number of children poisoned in the home
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Health
The number of children being poisoned in the home is on the rise, worrying new figures have revealed, with the increase blamed on brightly coloured capsules of detergents.
A survey by the Red Cross found that there have been close to 1,500 reported poisoning cases involving the capsules - known as ‘liquitabs’ - with 96% of incidents involving children under five.
And a fifth of parents do not know how to help their child, with over 40% of those with a child under 13 admitting to having no first aid training at all.
Joe Mulligan, the British Red Cross head of first aid education, said: “We know that the vast majority of the incidents happen in the home, and because the cases involve minors, it’s absolutely imperative that parents, carers or minders know the right thing to do.
“Simple steps such as noting the name of the substance taken, when, and how much, can prove to be vital. As soon as possible, one should call 999. It is also important to note that the responder should at no point make the person sick as this may further damage their throat or hamper their breathing.”
Findings show that in most cases of liquitab poisoning, 82% of exposure was due to ingestion.
Mr Mulligan added: “Encouraging reports suggest authorities in some parts of the country – especially Scotland – are now providing cupboard catches for parents of minors. Manufacturers of gel capsules are also changing their packaging to include child resistant openers and prominent warnings."