Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Texas Poison Center Network Wants you to Know What to do if you have had too Much to Drink

New Year’s Eve is the time of year when many gather together with friends and family and welcome the New Year.  Frequently, some tend to include drinking alcohol into the celebration.  Last year, a 13 year old girl, in the Austin area, died from alcohol poisoning when she had too much to drink.  Not knowing what to do, her friends dropped her off in her driveway, where she was found dead. 

Since then, Texas has passed a new law.  If a minor is drinking with a group of friends and suspects someone may be experiencing alcohol poisoning, as long as they stay on scene until First Responders arrive, they will not face charges.

The Central Texas Poison Center wants you to be safe this New Year by offering these signs for you to watch for if you are with people that are drinking.  

Mental Confusion
Snoring/gasping for air
Throwing up

Hypothermia/cold and clammy skin
Erratic breathing
Loss of consciousness
Paleness or blueness of skin

It is recommended that if you will be drinking to always have a sober companion that can respond in case of an emergency.  

When in doubt, give the Poison Center a shout, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Our specially trained pharmacists, nurses, or physicians are available to answer your call for FREE and all calls are treated confidential, 1-800-222-1222.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Beware of Popular Laundry Packs that Resemble Candy

Poison control centers want you to be aware of popular laundry packs that can pose serious risks to children. These single-dose detergent capsules have a candy-like appearance and consist of a highly concentrated liquid that dissolves in the washing machine. But because they are so colorful and soft, they are attractive to children and become a possible poison in the home.

If a child were to put the laundry detergent packs into their mouth, it could cause a child to become very ill and possibly even require hospitalization. Poison centers to date have dealt with over 9,000 cases of kids five or younger being exposed to these single-load laundry packets. In some cases, children have gotten it into their eye causing severe irritation.

When a person swallows conventional laundry detergent, it can cause mild stomach problems- but this is not the case with the new laundry packs. Some children who have gotten the product in their mouths have had excessive vomiting, wheezing and gasping. Some get very sleepy. Some have had breathing problems serious enough to need a ventilator to help them breathe. There have also been reports of corneal abrasions (scratches to the eyes) when the detergent gets into a child’s eyes.

According to poison control officials, there has already been at least one fatality from the ingestion of these laundry packs. These laundry packs can be very dangerous for children. Here are some tips on how to keep these out of your child’s reach:

-       Keep detergent locked up out of sight and out of their reach

-       Always follow instructions on a product label

-       If you think your child has been exposed to any laundry detergent, but especially the highly concentrated laundry detergent packs, call your local poison center immediately at 1-800-222-1222. 

For more information on these laundry detergent capsules, please visit http://www.aapcc.org/alerts/laundry-detergent-packets/ or call 1-800-222-1222.