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Do you know what poisonous substances are lurking in your home? Are household cleaners and prescription drugs out of reach of children? Take some time during National Poison Prevention Week, March 17-23, 2013, to take an assessment of your home and protect your family against accidental poisoning. Below are some tips from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services to help you and your loved ones stay healthy.

 

Poison Prevention Tips 

  • Keep all hazardous materials in locked cabinets and out of reach of children.
  • Put safety latches on drawers and cabinets containing harmful household products.
  • Store all household products and medications in the original containers with the original labels on them.
  • Do not leave children alone with household products or medications. When using a product, take children with you if you leave the room.
  • Return household products to safe storage right after use.
  • Buy products in child-resistant packaging, when available.
  • Read all medication labels carefully
  • Never refer to medication as candy.
  • Store food and cleaners separately.
  • Place carbon monoxide detectors in your home.
  • Keep children away from any poisonous plants that may be in or around your home.
  • Watch children carefully when playing indoors and outdoors.
  • Post the number for the Regional Center for Poison Control and Prevention (1-800-222-1222) near all telephones in your home.

IF you think someone has been poisoned call the Regional Center for Poison Control and Prevention at 1-800-222-1222 (TTY: 1-888-244-5313) right away. Do not wait for the victim to look or feel sick. Do not try to treat the person yourself. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call 911 for an ambulance.

Poisoning includes drug overdose, and is the leading cause of injury related death in Massachusetts. Seek help for assistance with substance abuse or thoughts of suicide to help to reduce poisoning deaths.

Click here for more information on the Poison Prevention Program.

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