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Longer Periods of Indoor Time?  NC Poison Control Encourages Awareness of Poison Hazards at Home

Many people are experiencing more time indoors due to quarantining and stay-at-home orders.  This may also mean an interruption in normal family routines.  Unfortunately, poisoning exposures often occur when routines are disrupted.    

Everyday household items can turn into poisons if they’re used by the wrong person, in the wrong amount, or in the wrong way.

Common products that children can get into include:

  • Personal care products (like mouthwash, lotions, and sanitizer)

  • Cleaning products

  • Over-the-counter or prescription medications

  • Home improvement and artistic materials

  • Foreign objects (like silica gel packets, glow sticks, and coins)

NC Poison Control recommends that people consider the everyday items they use.  Keep household products and cleaners up and away and out of children’s sight.  NC Poison Control has created this room-by-room Home Safety Checklist to review potentially poisonous items in the home.  Click here to download or order the Home Safety Checklist.  

To prevent accidental poisoning:

  • Store personal care products, medicines, and cleaners up and away and out of sight.

  • Keep purses, handbags, or backpacks that contain medicines or personal care products up and away from children.

  • Teach young children not to touch or taste a product without a trusted adult’s permission.  Colorful and pleasant-smelling products can be appealing to children. 

  • Remember that children like to imitate adult behavior.

  • When giving children medicine, double check morning and evening medications to prevent double dosing. 

We know that accidents happen.  If you suspect a poisoning, call NC Poison Control anytime at 1-800-222-1222 to speak with a nurse or pharmacist for immediate help.

Celebrate National Poison Prevention Week March 15-21

North Carolina Poison Control will be celebrating National Poison Prevention Week throughout the month of March, and we hope you will, too!  Here are five practical ways you can celebrate National Poison Prevention Week.  Pick at least one action step this month, and then share these tips with friends and family.

  1. Know when to call poison control and when to call 911.  It’s tempting to regard every suspected poisoning as a 911 emergency.  However, toxicity is determined by the dose or amount.  This infographic can help empower you to take the best first aid steps in the event of a suspected poisoning.

  2. Review these common look-a-likes.  Young children can be attracted to the pleasing colors and smells of everyday products in the home.  Notice whether you’ve got colorful chemicals or medicines within reach of children and store these products up and away.

  3. Order a free poison prevention pack for you or someone you love.  Packs are available for a variety of ages and stages in life.

  4. Get rid of unwanted medicines through a take-back event or learn how to dispose of them safely at home.

  5. Program the poison control number in your phone (1-800-222-122) or bookmark the NC Poison Control website to chat (www.NCPoisonControl.org)

 

NC Poison Control taking state calls about coronavirus 

North Carolina Poison Control is now answering calls for the state’s Coronavirus Line, which was set up in January, to field questions and concerns about coronavirus.

The toll-free number to the Coronavirus Line is 1-866-462-3821.  Nurses and pharmacists answer the calls. 

The 2019 coronavirus was first identified in Wuhan City, China.  At this time, people in Wuhan City, or those who have traveled there, are at the greatest risk for infection.  The likelihood of someone getting sick with the coronavirus in the U.S. is low because the virus is not spreading in the U.S. 

People infected with the coronavirus can experience symptoms like those of the common cold to more serious respiratory illness.  Reported symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.  The spread of the virus is thought to occur from person-to-person through respiratory droplets when an infected person sneezes or coughs.

Even though infection is unlikely, there are some everyday steps you can take to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick;

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water;

  • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose if you haven’t washed your hands. 

If you feel you have symptoms of the coronavirus, or could have been exposed, call the NC Coronavirus Line at 1-866-462-3821. 

You can also visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus for more information.  

To see the NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) announcement about the new phone line, click here: 


 

New e-cigarette brochure from North Carolina Poison Control

North Carolina Poison Control has a new brochure available to help you navigate some of the information, or misinformation, you may be hearing about e-cigarettes.

The brochure equips you with facts about e-cigarettes and provides tips about how to approach the subject of vaping with the teens in your life.  You’ll also find out what to do in the event an e-cigarette poisoning is suspected.    

Parents with young children, this brochure is for you, too.  Children are at risk for e-cigarette poisoning if they come in contact with e-cigarette products.

Anyone in North Carolina can order a free e-cigarette brochure as a part of our teen pack.  Click here to order a teen pack. 

You can also click here to download or print the brochure.   

 


North Carolina Poison Control celebrates 25 years with PSA
 
In 2017, Carolinas Poison Center is marking its 25th anniversary. As the state of North Carolina’s only poison control center, we’ve advised people through a lot of ingestions, inhalations, envenomations, exposures on the skin, or in the eyes.

Hear from our staff as they describe a day in the life of a poison control center and why they love what they do.

Watch the 25th anniversary PSA video