The outside world might seem like it’s full of risks, but are you aware of the dangers that could be lurking inside your home, too? The statistics on poisoning accidents in the United States show the alarming truth about the dangers of hazardous materials around your house:
6.7 out of every 1,000 people were exposed to poisons in the United States
42.6 out of every 1,000 children were exposed to poisons in the United States
There is 1 poison exposure every 15 seconds
Children under the age of six are at the greatest risk
79.4% of poison exposure incidents were unintentional
There are many types of chemicals average household, and while just having them around does not mean an automatic injury, improper storage or use can quickly lead to tragedy.
Common chemicals found in everyday household items and materials include:
- Phthalates – found in personal care products and detergents
- BPA – found in plastic, the lining of food and beverage cans, and on receipts and money
- PFCs – found in stain-resistant clothing and upholstery, cooking pans, food wrappers, and inside microwave popcorn bags
- Lead – found in paint (manufactured before 1978) and plumbing
- Formaldehyde – found in building materials and hard plastic dishes
- Parabens – found in cosmetic and pharmaceutical items
- PBDEs and PBBs – found in electronics, building materials, and foam cushions
To prevent poisoning or irritation from household chemicals and items:
- Make sure children do not have access to potentially toxic materials. Keep everything properly labeled, and stored out of reach of children. Make sure your child knows not to play with or eat anything without consulting you first, especially if you have peeling paint around your house, or are working with chemicals while your child is around.
- When using chemicals or cleaners, make sure your home is properly ventilated.
- Check gas appliances routinely for carbon monoxide leaks. Install a CO detector in your home. CO is difficult to smell or see, but it quickly becomes fatal.
- Store all medicine out of reach of children, and monitor the amount of medicine you give to children. Remind any houseguests to keep their medication out of reach, too; oftentimes, accidental poisoning occurs when a child takes medication from the purse or bag of a relative, such as a grandparent.
- Never mix household products together (bleach and ammonia, for example, can be highly toxic when mixed together)
- Wear protective clothing when spraying pesticides
To speak with a poison control expert, you can call the poison control hotline. In an emergency (if the person is having a seizure, stops breathing, is unresponsive, etc.), you should call 911.
By being aware of the potential dangers around your house, and by taking preventative steps, you are helping to cut down on poisoning accidents.
The attorneys at Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes represent those involved in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and other types of personal injury matters. Our firm is one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Tampa Bay. There are no attorneys’ fees or costs unless we prevail for you. Call our office 24 hours a day at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.