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National Poison Prevention Week: March 17-23

align="right""Each year, more than 2 million poisonings are reported in the United States. More than 90% of those poisonings occur in the home.

Poisonings are one of the leading causes of death among adults and the majority of non-fatal poisonings occur in children younger than six years-old. Below are a few important steps suggested by the US Department of Health and Human Services that you can take to prevent accidental poisonings in your home. 

  • Never mix household or chemical products together. Doing so can create a dangerous gas. 
  • Never share prescription medicines. If you are taking more than one drug at a time, check with your health care provider, pharmacist, or call the toll-free Poison Help line (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center, to find out more about possible drug interactions. 
  • Keep all chemicals, household cleaners, medicines, and potentially poisonous substances in locked cabinets or out of the reach of children.

Also, pay close attention to the following products and be sure to store and dispose of them properly.

  • Painkillers
  • Sedatives (drugs used to reduce anxiety), hypnotics (sleeping pills), and antipsychotics (drugs used to treat mental illness)
  • Household cleaning products

For information about how to safely store and dispose unused medication including prescription painkillers go to: – “Disposal of Unneeded Medicines: What You Should Know.”

For tips to safely handle and manage household hazardous products and wastes, read the Ohio EPA's Guide to Safe Management of Household Hazardous Waste.

The Poison Prevention Week Council has issued a list of 50 Poisoning Prevention Tips to help prevent poisonings in your home. It is important that you take simple steps to prevent a poisoning from happening. If you suspect you or someone you know has been poisoned, immediately call the toll-free Poison Help line (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center.