Habitot Children's Museum

FALL-WINTER HOURS
October 1- March 31
Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 4:30
9:30 - 4:30
9:30 - 4:30

SPRING-SUMMER HOURS
April 1 - September 30
Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun

9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 12:30
9:30 - 4:30
9:30 - 4:30
Private Rentals Only

THIS MONTH'S SPONSOR
State Farm Insurance
Berkeley Agent, Gary Eason
http://garyeason.net/



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Habitot Children's Museum
2065 Kittredge Street
Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 647-1111
www.habitot.org


Preventing Accidental Poisoning
This month, which includes National Poison Prevention Week-March 16-22, we encourage parents to pay special attention to all the poisons in and around your home.

Accidental poisoning is one of the top three reasons children 0-5 years old are hospitalized in California. Over 50% of the calls to Poison Control are about children 0-5, and 95% of the calls are about something a child ingested in the home.

Most homes are full of poisons that are harmful or even fatal to young children, including over-the-counter medications, household cleaners, bath and body products, ointments and creams, pesticides, auto products, and even some common houseplants. Don’t rely on the notion that if you have told your children once, they will remember, or that “my kids don’t put things in their mouths.”

Children 0-5 are at the greatest risk for a number of reasons:

  • they don’t know what they should and shouldn’t ingest,
  • they are natural explorers who constantly put things in their mouths
    to learn about them,
  • they don’t always learn from experience, or remember the rules, and
  • their sense of taste and smell is not yet fully developed.
In addition, many poisonous substances look very similar to foods or drinks that children are familiar with. Blue Gatorade looks a lot like Windex, and many prescription medicines look like candy.

Here are some steps you can take for keeping your kids safe from poisons in the home:

  • Take an inventory of products you have stored in your kitchen, bathroom, bedroom nightstand, garage and any outdoor storage facilities. Put ANYTHING that could be potentially poisonous to children out of reach AND locked up. If you’ve ever seen a child climb something you thought they couldn’t possibly, you know that being out of reach is not enough; dangerous products must also be locked up.

  • Be especially mindful of whenever you use these products to secure them again immediately after using.

  • epeat offenders among poisonous substances include household cleaners, all medications, vitamin supplements, caustic personal care products, and auto fluids. A new danger on the list are the small disk batteries in electronic games, cell phones, greeting cards and other electronics – when ingested, the batteries corrode within hours and can cause devastating damage to internal organs.
    (see our Parent Q&A from February)

  • Avoid letting your child see you taking medicine and NEVER call medicine candy to get your child to take it. These tactics send the wrong message to children and increase the chance of their ingesting medicine accidentally.

  • Do not keep poisonous houseplants in your home until children are well past the age of putting things in their mouths. Learn about the plants in your yard and neighborhood and talk to your children about them. Potentially poisonous plants include the calla lily, cactus family plants, the leaves and stems of tomato family plants (which include potato and eggplant), and oleander, which can be deadly if ingested. Here is a list of common poisonous house and garden plants: www.nybg.org/plants/factsheets/poison.html

  • Program the number of Poison Control into your phone: 1-800-222-1222. You can call 24-hours a day, 7 days a week. You can call even for information or questions. In an emergency, always call 911.

  • Text “SafeKids” to 69866 for weekly text messages on life saving poison prevention topics.

  • Visit the Poison Prevention table at Habitot the week of March 16-22 for more information, referrals and resources to help keep your kids safe.

 
Resources:

Safe Kids Worldwide on Poisoning
www.safekids.org/search?search_api_views_fulltext=poison

Safe Kids California
www.safekidscalifornia.org/

California Poison Control System.
calpoison.org/

Pills Vs. Candy.
pillsvscandy.com/

Safe and Poisonous Garden Plants. UC Davis. 2012.
ucanr.edu/sites/poisonous_safe_plants/files/154528.pdf

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