Liquid detergent capsules pose safety risk for toddlers
Ever seen those colorful laundry and dish-washing detergent capsules and thought they sort of look like large pieces of chewable candy? Well, some toddlers think they are, and they’re taking big bites out of them, according to a report published Wednesday in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
British pediatricians reported treating five children under age two who came in to the emergency room after they tried to eat the liquid capsules and developed breathing difficulties and severe damage to their throat and esophagus from consuming the detergent.
The American Association of Poison Control Centers said it’s received an uptick in phone calls from parents whose children swallowed the detergent packets. They counted 2,950 calls from parents of children age 5 and under this year, according to CNN, with 734 calls in August.
While no deaths have been reported in the United States, serious injuries have occurred, including a 15-month-old and 17-month-old who had to be placed on ventilators after developing airway and lung damage.
Since most products containing the detergent capsules don’t have child-proof safety caps, parents of young children should keep detergents locked up and out of a child’s reach, the poison control association recommended. They should contact their local poison center at 1-800-222-1222 immediately if their child ingests any detergent.Deborah Kotz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @debkotz2.
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