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Summertime is in full gear…and so are poisonings

July 31, 2018

With summer in full swing, there are numerous opportunities for people to encounter dangerous situations regarding toxic substances. On Monday, the Nebraska Regional Poison Center released some of the primary substances/poisons to be wary of during this time of the year.

Some primary concerns include the following, as well as safety tips to avoid being exposed to these poisons:

Plant and Mushroom Poisonings:

*The initial hazard is choking. Remove any piece from the mouth, but don’t induce vomiting.

*Teach children never to put any part of a plant, including berries, in their mouths.

*A tip for indoor plants is to write down the name of each plant you have on a clean Popsicle stick and put it in the soil. If an ingestion should occur you will know the name of the plant. This is especially helpful if someone else is caring for the child and an ingestion occurs.

*Mushrooms may look very interesting and enticing to young children. There are several varieties. Often the typical yard mushroom is a stomach irritant.

Gasoline/Motor oil/Lighter fluid/Paint thinners:

*The hydrocarbon group is slick and oily.

*One of the main risks with ingestion is chemical pneumonia.

*Store all of these products in the original container and well out of reach of little hands.

Insect Repellents:

*Only use insect repellents that are meant to be used on the skin. Avoid over-application. Follow all label directions.

*The long word for DEET is N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide. Look for that on the label.

*Use concentrations less than 20 percent. A higher concentration does not mean that the product will work better, rather it means that it will be effective for a longer period of time.

*Use repellents only when outdoors and wash skin with soap and water when coming in.

*Picaridin is an odorless synthetic ingredient found in some bug repellents and is a safe alternative to use on children.

Bites and Stings:

*One of the main risks with bites and stings is an allergic reaction.

*Local reactions are common and can often be treated at home with Poison Center recommendations.

*Types of calls to the Poison Center include bee/wasp, spider, snake and insect bites.

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