poison happenings

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POISONING “HAPPENINGS” THROUGH THE SEASONS Donna Lotzer, RPh Certified Specialist in Poison Information UW Hospital Poison Prevention and Education Center


MOST FREQUENT EXPOSURES INCLUDE… Pain relievers (3) Household cleaners (2) Cosmetics/personal care products (1) Sedatives & sleepers Foreign bodies (4) Multivitamins (7) Cough & cold preps (6) Antidepressants (-) is rank in WI children under 6 YOA Pesticides (8) Bites & stings Plants (5) Alcohols Cardiovascular drugs Antibiotics (9) Food poisoning Hydrocarbons (petroleum distillates)


1-800-222-1222 Poison center help anytime, anywhere, 24 hrs/7 days a week Center at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee Education and outreach centers in Milwaukee and Madison


JANUARY Cabin fever time Poison safety tips Clean basement, toss unused items out Label all containers Keep all items in original containers Clean out spider webs Safety-sweep workshop and laundry areas

January Poison Opportunities: 

January Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Norfolk pine Dieffenbachia Outdoors hazards Road and sidewalk salt Windshield washer fluid Call 1-800-222-1222 for poison center help Medication of the month Cough and cold products Dextromethorphan Indoors hazards Mouse and rat baits Lamp oil and kerosene


FEBRUARY Winter vacation time Poison safety tips Keep poison center # handy on the road Make sure of adequate supplies of all Rx meds Caution with strange plants and animals (spiders, snakes, etc.)

February Poison Opportunities: 

February Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Rose Carnation Outdoors hazards Space heater in garage work area - CO Automobile exhaust with poor ventilation Medication of the month Anti-diarrhea meds Lomotil®, Imodium® Indoors hazards Hair and nail products Ant baits


MARCH Hints of springtime? Poison safety tips Check for peeling (lead) paint if remodeling indoors or outside the home POISON PREVENTION WEEK (3rd week in month) Call 1-800-222-1222 for materials

March Poison Opportunities: 

March Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Shamrock Easter lily Outdoors hazards Water quality issues? Check it out locally Chemicals, pesticides present in soil? Medication of the month Vitamins with iron Adult iron pills Indoors hazards Failure to read labels on cleaners Mixing produces toxic fumes and can even kill! (bleach & acid=chlorine gas)


APRIL Spring flower time Poison safety tips Know and ID toxic plants in landscaping & garden Ensure safety for pets Food and cleaners stored separately? Child locks on cabinets?

April Poison Opportunities: 

April Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Daffodils Burdock Outdoors hazards Spring bulb plantings Critters out of winter sleep, insects & spiders start to nest (bees) Mistaken plant ID’s Medication of the month Pain relievers OTC and Rx meds Indoors hazards Personal care products Toothpaste, shampoo, mouthwash, soap Disc and remote control batteries Dish soap


MAY Mushroom time Poison safety tips Spring clean closets and safely dispose of unwanted items Put Mr Yuk stickers on items with children helping (education) Call 1-800-222-1222 for materials, stickers

May Poison Opportunities: 

May Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Mushrooms Mayapple Outdoors hazards Morel season, but caution for false morels at same locations Don’t rely on guidebooks for safe “browsing” on plants or mushrooms Medication of the month Sedatives and sleepers, psych meds Indoors hazards Caution using drain and toilet cleaners Teens and inhalant abuse Self-medication for allergies


JUNE Bountiful summertime Poison safety tips Inventory and eliminate old garden chemicals in storage sheds and garages Consider rabies hazards Pets vaccinated? Bats and other wild animals are carriers

June Poison Opportunities: 

June Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Stinging nettle Jack-in-the-pulpit Outdoors hazards Car clean-up products Detergent Wheel cleaner (HF acid) Swimming pool chemicals Medication of the month Topical products Diaper rash creams Hydrocortisone Baby powder Indoors hazards Pesticides in basement Tobacco products


JULY Summer vacation time Poison safety tips Keep cold food cold, hot food hot at picnics “Heads up” for spiders, ticks, insects Take poison center 800# along when traveling… 1-800-222-1222

July Poison Opportunities: 

July Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Poison ivy Wild parsnip Outdoors hazards Bites and stings Allergic or toxic reactions possible Insect repellent misuse Siphoning gasoline Medication of the month Antihistamines Allergy meds (Benadryl®) Indoors hazards Alcohol at parties Insulation “itchies” when building or remodeling Furniture polish Glass and surface cleaners


AUGUST Bored & exploring time Poison safety tips Review farm safety tips in barns, silos, manure pits Grill outs mean caution with charcoal lighter fluid Pay attention to paint and stain cleanup (paint thinner)

August Poison Opportunities: 

August Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Nightshade Queen Anne’s lace Outdoors hazards Fish stings (catfish) Snakebites Travel encounters with exotic creatures (scorpions) Medication of the month Antidepressants Wellbutrin®/Zyban® Prozac®, Zoloft® Indoors hazards Canning hot peppers Dishwasher and hand-dishwashing detergents


SEPTEMBER School time Poison safety tips Spot hazards en route and on school grounds Daycare checked out? Be sure the school can reach the poison center Offer phone stickers with 800# 1-800-222-1222 for poison emergency help

September Poison Opportunities: 

September Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Yew Lily of the Valley Outdoor hazards Fall lawn care products Seed pods, puffballs Nuts, berries edible? Medication of the month ADHD meds Ritalin®, Concerta® Adderal® Patches now too Indoor hazards Chemistry lab accidents Pens/ink, markers Silica gel in everything Laundry detergents


OCTOBER Fall harvest time Poison safety tips Review safe canning techniques for food Be observant when walking in the woods Halloween hazards?

October Poison Opportunities: 

October Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Acorns Mushrooms and berries Outdoor hazards Hot tub chemicals Late-season poison ivy !! Farm accidents at harvest time Medication of the month Antibiotics Antivirals Indoor hazards Floor and carpet cleaners Carpet Cleaner


NOVEMBER Turkey day time Poison safety tips Hunting safety tips for meat CO hazard in trailers and cabins

November Poison Opportunities: 

November Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Aloe vera Cactus Outdoor hazards Winterizing/antifreeze Occupational risks Medication of the month Heart, blood pressure, cholesterol meds Indoor hazards Propane, charcoal grills Proper handling and storage of holiday foods Bleach-containing cleaners improperly used ANTIFREEZE


DECEMBER Holiday time Poison safety tips Extra vigilance for small children is needed (parties) X-Mas ornaments can be a hazard Poison center staff always on duty at 1-800-222-1222

December Poison Opportunities: 

December Poison Opportunities Plants of the month Poinsettia, X-Mas tree Holly, mistletoe Outdoor hazards Garage work/play area Frostbite Medication of the month Oral contraceptives, hormone replacement Indoor hazards Alcoholic drinks Bubble lights on tree X-Mas gifts Cologne Toys-choking hazard



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