Title : Accidental ingestion of household substances by children – consequences and strategies for prevention
It only takes a moment for a small child to find and swallow something poisonous. The most common accidental ingestions in children are of household products, such as cleaning substances, medications, cosmetics, personal care products, and foreign bodies. Often, the products are inappropriately stored in drinking glasses or unlabeled containers, and they may be attractive and pleasant- smelling leading to the ingestion. Hydrocarbons ingestion is most frequently seen in children under the age of 6.
Majority of these accidental poisonings – more than 90% occur in the home in the presence of parents. Minor household distractions - the telephone, the doorbell or checking something cooking on the stove allows sufficient time for the little kids to harm themselves. Hydrocarbons ingestion is most frequently seen in children under the age of 6.
The incidence and type of the accidental ingestions in children along with the morbidity associated with it will be analysed. An initial management protocol so as to reduce complications and shorten hospital stay will be discussed with special reference to hydrocarbon ingestion. Strategies to prevent domestic substance ingestion with respect to parent education and safe storing practices will be emphasized.