Poison Control Center: How to keep children safe

The Poison Center at The University of Kansas Health SystemDrug overdoses just surpassed motor vehicle accidents as the leading cause of death in the United States. The University of Kansas Health System's Poison Control Center provides expert medical advice to families and health care providers every day on how to treat toxic drug exposures.

Children are the biggest reason for most calls received by the Poison Control Center. About 65 percent of the poison exposures handled by specialists last year were children under five years old. Curiosity mixed with household chemicals, personal care products, or medications can be deadly. With special care, especially around children, some of the hazards can be avoided.

How can you keep children safe:

  • Never leave dangerous products unattended
  • Keep products/medications locked up and out of the reach/sight of children
  • Keep medications and household products in containers with child-resistant caps
  • Store products in their original containers
  • Never call medicine “candy”
  • Always have the Poison Control number available

The poison hotline, 1-800-222-1222, is accessible from anywhere in the state of Kansas and is open to health care workers, daycare centers, parents, babysitters, school nurses, grandparents, nursing homes, workplaces: anyone can call regarding any kind of poison exposure or for poison information. The Poison Control Center can provide interested individuals or groups with educational materials such as magnets, stickers, brochures, training and classes.

A call to the Poison Control Center is free and confidential. The staff of doctors, nurses and pharmacists is available 24/7/365. We are available to help you with any toxic exposure. Drugs, chemicals, gases can all be toxic exposures, which can happen through ingestion, inhalation, skin exposure, eye exposure and many other ways.