Consumer Reports: Protecting kids from household dangers

Nydia Han Image
Thursday, August 9, 2018
Consumer Reports: Protecting kids from household dangers
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Consumer Reports: Protecting kids from household dangers - Nydia Han reports during Action News at 4:30pm on August 9, 2018.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The number of children getting into potentially harmful things around the house is staggering. Recent data shows that out of 2 million poison control calls made - nearly half concerned kids ages 6 and under.

Common household products can be risky and this is especially important to note during the summer when kids tend to be spend more time in other people's homes - like a friend's or a grandparent's house.

Smily Tapia had a real scare with her young daughter.

"She opened the toy and put the battery in her mouth," she said.

More than 2,800 kids per year in the U.S. are treated in ERs after swallowing button-batteries, so make sure battery compartments in toys and other household electronics are tightly secured with a screwdriver or a similar method.

"Button-cell batteries are small flat batteries that look like coins. It becomes a choking hazard, and asphyxiation may occur," said Don Huber from Consumer Reports.

And there are more dangers in your house you might not consider. Cosmetics and personal care products like mouthwash and hand sanitizer, were the most common exposures reported to poison control centers for children under 6.

"Many of them contain ethanol which is the same type of alcohol you find in alcoholic beverages. Just a small amount can cause a young child of say 25 pounds or less to become extremely intoxicated," said Huber.

Also dangerous are cleaning products. Keep them out of kids' reach.

"Keep personal care products and cleaners and other things in the package in which they were bought because typically they have a child-resistant closure on them," suggests Huber.

As for those colorful laundry detergent pods that can look like candy? Consumer Reports recommends not even having them in the house if you have young kids.

"I believe that you should keep everything in a safe place even though you think it's nothing, because you never know," said Tapia.

And be creative when storing. A child may try to use a chair to reach things in high places.

If you suspect a child has ingested a toxic product, call 1-800-222-1222. The line is open 24 hours a day.

To read the full story from Consumer Reports, CLICK HERE.


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