When you think of poisons, the first things that come to mind may be hemlock, antifreeze and pesticides. But, there are many more products lurking in your bathroom cabinet, hiding under your kitchen sink, or lying on your garage shelf that can cause harm if used improperly, by the wrong person, or in the incorrect amount. Seemingly innocuous items such as shoe polish, mouthwash, makeup or carpet cleaners can be poisonous when swallowed, inhaled, or enter the body through the eyes, ears or skin.

To help raise awareness and prevent accidental poisonings, Doctors Hospital at White Rock Lake will recognize March 18 to 24 as National Poison Prevention Week. Each year more than 2 million poisonings are reported to the 57 poison control centers nationwide. In excess of 90 percent of these poisonings happen in the home and the majority of non-fatal poisonings involve children under six years of age.

Poison prevention begins with being aware of possible hazards around the house and taking the necessary precautions to prevent poisoning. Here are some precautions:

  • Because “childproof” medicine bottles are really just child resistant, keep all medicines out of the reach of children.
  • Keep all products in original containers.
  • Store bottles of alcohol in a locked cabinet.
  • Keep children away from poisonous house plants or buy nonpoisonous ones.
  • Do not refer to medicines or vitamins as “candy” or other names that appeal to children.
  • Always store food and cleaners in separate cabinets or rooms.

To learn more about how to make your home a poison-safe zone, take the free, online Household Poisons Quiz available on the Doctors Hospital at White Rock Lake website at

Doctors Hospital at White Rock Lake
214 324-6100

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