Preventing Poisoning Among Children
Preventing Poisoning Among Children


Household and Chemical Products

  • If you are using a product and need to answer the telephone or doorbell, take the child with you. Remember that most poisonings occur when the product is being used.

  • Use extra caution during mealtimes or when the family routine is disrupted. Many poisonings take place at this time.

  • Store all products in their original containers. DO NOT use food containers such as milk jugs or soda bottles to store household and chemical products.

  • Store all poisonous household and chemical products out of sight of children.

  • Store food and household and chemical products in separate areas. Mistaken identity could cause a serious poisoning. Many poisonous products look-a-like and come in containers very similar to drinks or food. An example of this is apple juice and pine cleaner.

  • Use safety locks on all cabinets. Store potential poisons out of reach of small children

  • Return household and chemical products to safe storage immediately after use.

  • Pesticides can be absorbed through the skin and can be extremely toxic. Keep children away from areas that have recently been sprayed. Store these products in a safe place where children cannot reach them.

  • Discard old or outdated household and chemical products.

  • Take time to teach children about poisonous substances


  • DON'T call medicine candy. Medicines and candy look-a-like and children cannot tell the difference.
    Vitamins are medicine. Vitamins with iron can be especially poisonous. Keep them locked up and out of reach of children.
    Keep medicines out of sight, locked up and out of reach of children.

  • Be aware of medicines that visitors may bring into your home. Children are curious and may investigate visitor's purses and suitcases.
    Never leave pills on the counter or in a plastic bags. Always store medicines in their original container with a child-resistant cap.
    Make sure that all medicines are in child-resistant containers and labeled properly. Remember child resistant does not mean child proof.

  • Avoid taking medicines in front of children. Young children often imitate "grown-ups."

  • Keep a bottle of Ipecac Syrup in your medicine cabinet. Make sure the babysitter knows where you store your Ipecac Syrup. Do not use the syrup unless instructed by the Poison Control Center or your doctor.

Poisonous Plants

California Poison Action Hotline

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