By Substance

Alcohol

Tis the Season to Be Poisoned

Many accidental poisonings occur when parents are distracted. Holiday activities and holiday entertaining certainly increase this risk. During the excitement of the holidays, temptations for children are often more than they can handle. Take a few minutes to poison-proof your home and make this holiday season a safe one. O...

Read more

Hand Sanitizers: How Toxic Are They?

Recently, an email has circulated warning parents not to use hand sanitizers due to the danger they pose to children.  And while hand sanitizers can be dangerous if swallowed, actual symptoms from their misuse are extremely rare.  Most children who get a “taste” or a “lick” of hand sanitizer...

Read more

Fall Poisonings

Fall is the season of change. The leaves begin to change colors, the temperature begins to drop, and our whole mentality begins to shift towards “the holidays.” First we have Labor Day, then Halloween, followed by Thanksgiving and Christmas. All these holidays bring about a whole different type of...

Read more

Animal Venom

Summer Hazards

Our Texas Poison Center Network (TPCN) would like to remind you of some of the dangers associated with the warm summer season. With school out and children moving to new environments like day care, summer camp, and staying with relatives, come new hazards and potential poisonings. Taking the time...

Read more

Venomous Animals of Texas

A venomous animal is one that produces a poison (venom) to attack its prey or defend itself. Some animal’s venom is more toxic than others. People, who have an encounter with these animals, have varied reactions to their venom. Click here to download the document and read more.

Read more

Carbon monoxide

Have a Poison-Free Holiday and Winter

With money being tight and heating prices skyrocketing upward, many people are weathering the cold rather than turning on the heat. But eventually, the heat must be turned on and that may expose your family to a serious toxic risk – carbon monoxide. Every household that is equipped with a...

Read more

January is the Deadliest Month for Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

According to a new study by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the first month of the year is the worst for carbon monoxide poisoning. At least two people die each day from carbon-monoxide poisoning in January—three times the fatality rate recorded in August and July....

Read more

Tis the Season to Be Poisoned

Many accidental poisonings occur when parents are distracted. Holiday activities and holiday entertaining certainly increase this risk. During the excitement of the holidays, temptations for children are often more than they can handle. Take a few minutes to poison-proof your home and make this holiday season a safe one. O...

Read more

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent Killer

Each year in the United States, more than 200 accidental deaths are caused by carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. It is considered the leading cause of death from poisoning in the United States. The Texas Poison Center Network documents hundreds of carbon monoxide poisonings each year. The Silent Killer  Commonly known as...

Read more

Cleaning Products

Highly Concentrated “Single-Load Liquid Laundry Packets” Can Cause Serious Harm to Young Children

These new laundry packets dissolve in the washing machine. Because they are colorful and squishy, they are attractive to children. They can look like candy or something fun to play with. Poison centers receive many calls each year about children getting into laundry detergent. Swallowing it often causes mild stomach...

Read more

Cosmetics and personal care products

Hand Sanitizers: How Toxic Are They?

Recently, an email has circulated warning parents not to use hand sanitizers due to the danger they pose to children.  And while hand sanitizers can be dangerous if swallowed, actual symptoms from their misuse are extremely rare.  Most children who get a “taste” or a “lick” of hand sanitizer...

Read more

Cough & Cold

Scholastic Develops a Program to Teach Tweens About Medication Safety

In 2011, poison centers managed over 140,000 cases of medicine poison exposures involving children ages 6 to 19. An estimated 58,546 emergency department visits were caused by adolescents self-administering medications, and 33.9 percent of these visits resulted from an overdose of OTC medications – about 10,000 per year. Scholastic, in partnership...

Read more

What’s The Story On Children’s Over The Counter Cough and Cold Medicines?

If you’re a parent, chances are you’ve given your little ones cold medicine when they’re sick.  Now the Food and Drug Administration [FDA] is considering changing the labels on these medicines and the companies that make the most popular brands are already pulling them off the shelves.  Problems associated...

Read more

A Word of Caution As You Treat the Flu

What do a lot of people do when they feel achy and are running a fever? They go straight to the medicine cabinet for an over-the-counter (OTC) medicine. While OTC drugs can be helpful in controlling flu symptoms, it is easy to overdose on one very commonly available drug. Acetaminophen...

Read more

Keeping Your Family Safe Around Medicine

Today there are more medicines in the home than ever before, and this increases the potential risk to children of accidental medicine poisoning.   Every year, more than 59,000 young children are seen in emergency rooms because they got into medicine while a caregiver wasn’t looking.  Almost every minute of...

Read more

Food and drink

Tis the Season to Be Poisoned

Many accidental poisonings occur when parents are distracted. Holiday activities and holiday entertaining certainly increase this risk. During the excitement of the holidays, temptations for children are often more than they can handle. Take a few minutes to poison-proof your home and make this holiday season a safe one. O...

Read more

How Can I Keep My Family Safe from Salmonella?

Chances are that sometime during the past 24 months, your body was invaded by a bacterium or virus that had taken up residence in a food you ate.  Odds are that it didn’t land you in the hospital but the food poisoning it gave you probably made you feel...

Read more

Candy and Lead Poisoning

Lead poisoning continues to be among the most common and serious environmental health threat to children under the age of six. Most children are poisoned through chronic, low-level exposures. Lead poisoning can cause problems such as lower IQ, hyperactivity, impaired growth, learning disabilities, and behavior problems. The candies listed below...

Read more

How Should I Get Rid Of My Old Medicines?

In the past, Poison Centers have recommended just flushing those old unwanted or expired drugs down the toilet or putting them down the sink.  These recommendations were made specifically to prevent accidental ingestion and poisoning of children and pets.  Studies over the past several years though have shown this...

Read more

How Can I Keep Up With All The Recalls?

Lead Poisoning!  Food Poisoning!  How am I supposed to keep up with all of the recalls?  Have you asked yourself that question recently?  It seems like every day we hear about another product that has been recalled for one reason or another.  Parents do have to work hard to...

Read more

Food Poisoning: The Unwelcome Dinner Guest

“It must be something I ate”. When you think of a hamburger, what comes to mind? Is it a delicious treat–hot, juicy and fresh from the grill? Or do you imagine “Montezuma’s Revenge” or some other unwelcome gastrointestinal upset? The prime causes of food-borne illness are a collection of...

Read more

Fall Poisonings

Fall is the season of change. The leaves begin to change colors, the temperature begins to drop, and our whole mentality begins to shift towards “the holidays.” First we have Labor Day, then Halloween, followed by Thanksgiving and Christmas. All these holidays bring about a whole different type of...

Read more

Summer Picnic Tips To Keep You and Your Family Safe from Food Poisoning

Summer is here and most of us take advantage of the warm weather to hold barbecues and picnics. Most common food related illnesses are caused by improper storage or handling of food. Depending on the kind of bacteria causing the problem, symptoms of the most common kinds of food...

Read more

Beware of Certain Food and Medicine Interactions

Some foods just go together – peanut butter and jelly, milk and cookies, cake and ice cream. But did you know that taking some prescription drugs with certain foods, beverages or over-the-counter (OTC) medications could be risky, even a recipe for a severe health reaction? According to specialists with the...

Read more

Insects & Spiders

Pesticides and Child Safety

Although pesticides can be beneficial to society, they can be dangerous if used carelessly or if they are not stored properly and out of the reach of children. According to data collected from the American Association of Poison Control Centers, in 1996 alone, an estimated 78,000 children were involved...

Read more

Summer Hazards

Our Texas Poison Center Network (TPCN) would like to remind you of some of the dangers associated with the warm summer season. With school out and children moving to new environments like day care, summer camp, and staying with relatives, come new hazards and potential poisonings. Taking the time...

Read more

Using Insect Repellents Safely

Mosquitoes, biting flies, and ticks can be annoying and sometimes pose a serious risk to public health. In certain areas of the U.S., mosquitoes can transmit diseases like equine and St. Louis encephalitis. Biting flies can inflict a painful bite that can persist for days, swell, and become infected....

Read more

Venomous Animals of Texas

A venomous animal is one that produces a poison (venom) to attack its prey or defend itself. Some animal’s venom is more toxic than others. People, who have an encounter with these animals, have varied reactions to their venom. Click here to download the document and read more.

Read more

Lead

Candy and Lead Poisoning

Lead poisoning continues to be among the most common and serious environmental health threat to children under the age of six. Most children are poisoned through chronic, low-level exposures. Lead poisoning can cause problems such as lower IQ, hyperactivity, impaired growth, learning disabilities, and behavior problems. The candies listed below...

Read more

What’s All the Fuss About Lead?

Lead poisoning is a condition caused by swallowing or inhaling lead particles. Even small amounts of lead can be dangerous, especially to young children. Because lead is available from many sources, children in nearly all parts of the U.S. are affected by lead poisoning. Symptoms of mild lead poisoning...

Read more

Medication Safety

Prescription Drug Abuse Up Sharply In Youth

Recently sheriff’s deputies were called to a school because a 12 year old child was passing out methadone pills to another student. The child confirmed swapping parent’s prescription pills was common in school. Parents and teachers need to realize any narcotic drug in the hands of youngsters is potentially life...

Read more

Scholastic Develops a Program to Teach Tweens About Medication Safety

In 2011, poison centers managed over 140,000 cases of medicine poison exposures involving children ages 6 to 19. An estimated 58,546 emergency department visits were caused by adolescents self-administering medications, and 33.9 percent of these visits resulted from an overdose of OTC medications – about 10,000 per year. Scholastic, in partnership...

Read more

What’s The Story On Children’s Over The Counter Cough and Cold Medicines?

If you’re a parent, chances are you’ve given your little ones cold medicine when they’re sick.  Now the Food and Drug Administration [FDA] is considering changing the labels on these medicines and the companies that make the most popular brands are already pulling them off the shelves.  Problems associated...

Read more

You Need to Know: Infant’s & Children’s Acetaminophen Medicine Changes

What is the change? In the past, there have been two different concentrations of acetaminophen-containing liquid medications (such as Tylenol®) for children. These were infant (concentrated) drops that contained 80 mg of acetaminophen in each 0.8 mL and children’s liquid that contained 160 mg in each 5 mL. These two...

Read more

How Should I Get Rid Of My Old Medicines?

In the past, Poison Centers have recommended just flushing those old unwanted or expired drugs down the toilet or putting them down the sink.  These recommendations were made specifically to prevent accidental ingestion and poisoning of children and pets.  Studies over the past several years though have shown this...

Read more

How Can I Keep Up With All The Recalls?

Lead Poisoning!  Food Poisoning!  How am I supposed to keep up with all of the recalls?  Have you asked yourself that question recently?  It seems like every day we hear about another product that has been recalled for one reason or another.  Parents do have to work hard to...

Read more

Thinking Medication Safety As The Kids Go Back To School

Most schools will soon be back in session and for some Texas children, who take prescription medications during the day, a little extra planning is required before they head off to school or daycare. Every year the Texas Poison Center Network receives calls from schools and daycare centers about...

Read more

Beware of Certain Food and Medicine Interactions

Some foods just go together – peanut butter and jelly, milk and cookies, cake and ice cream. But did you know that taking some prescription drugs with certain foods, beverages or over-the-counter (OTC) medications could be risky, even a recipe for a severe health reaction? According to specialists with the...

Read more

A Word of Caution As You Treat the Flu

What do a lot of people do when they feel achy and are running a fever? They go straight to the medicine cabinet for an over-the-counter (OTC) medicine. While OTC drugs can be helpful in controlling flu symptoms, it is easy to overdose on one very commonly available drug. Acetaminophen...

Read more

New Study Points to Poisoning Dangers for Babies 6 Months and Younger

A new study raises awareness of the dangers of unintentional exposure to poisons for babies 6 months and younger. Traditionally, this has not been an age group that poison center educators have focused on, because infants aren’t up and walking about. But while a young baby may be less mobile,...

Read more

Child-Resistant is NOT Child-Proof

It seems as though those hard-to-open bottles have been around forever. And for new parents today, they have. But what is the reason and history behind the child-resistant packages? Back to the 1960s children were dying from poisonings in large numbers. The country developed an education program to warn parents...

Read more

Keeping Your Family Safe Around Medicine

Today there are more medicines in the home than ever before, and this increases the potential risk to children of accidental medicine poisoning.   Every year, more than 59,000 young children are seen in emergency rooms because they got into medicine while a caregiver wasn’t looking.  Almost every minute of...

Read more

Mercury

Winter Hazards: Mercury

Winter time means Santa time but it can also mean cold and flu time. It can also mean exposure to another poison hazard. Many of us has been fascinated with mercury when working with it in chemistry lab or when it’s used in Sci-fi-movies. It’s nothing supernatural: it’s just mercury....

Read more

Pesticides & Repellents

Pesticides and Child Safety

Although pesticides can be beneficial to society, they can be dangerous if used carelessly or if they are not stored properly and out of the reach of children. According to data collected from the American Association of Poison Control Centers, in 1996 alone, an estimated 78,000 children were involved...

Read more

Summer Hazards

Our Texas Poison Center Network (TPCN) would like to remind you of some of the dangers associated with the warm summer season. With school out and children moving to new environments like day care, summer camp, and staying with relatives, come new hazards and potential poisonings. Taking the time...

Read more

Venomous Animals of Texas

A venomous animal is one that produces a poison (venom) to attack its prey or defend itself. Some animal’s venom is more toxic than others. People, who have an encounter with these animals, have varied reactions to their venom. Click here to download the document and read more.

Read more

Plants

Summer Hazards

Our Texas Poison Center Network (TPCN) would like to remind you of some of the dangers associated with the warm summer season. With school out and children moving to new environments like day care, summer camp, and staying with relatives, come new hazards and potential poisonings. Taking the time...

Read more

Know Your Plants

Safe or Poisonous? Each year over 100,000 people in the United States call Poison Control Centers regarding plant and mushroom exposures. Young children, and sometimes pets, will often chew and eat anything within reach no matter how it tastes. There is no easy “test” for knowing poisonous plants from those...

Read more

Leaves of Three Let Them Be

As spring moves into summer, the Texas Poison Center Network begins to receive calls about poison ivy and poison oak, common summertime poisons that can cause a lot of discomfort for people enjoying the outdoors. Poison ivy and poison oak can release a substance called urushiol when the leaves or...

Read more

Poison Safety & Prevention

Have a Poison-Free Holiday and Winter

With money being tight and heating prices skyrocketing upward, many people are weathering the cold rather than turning on the heat. But eventually, the heat must be turned on and that may expose your family to a serious toxic risk – carbon monoxide. Every household that is equipped with a...

Read more

Winter Hazards: Mercury

Winter time means Santa time but it can also mean cold and flu time. It can also mean exposure to another poison hazard. Many of us has been fascinated with mercury when working with it in chemistry lab or when it’s used in Sci-fi-movies. It’s nothing supernatural: it’s just mercury....

Read more

January is the Deadliest Month for Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

According to a new study by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the first month of the year is the worst for carbon monoxide poisoning. At least two people die each day from carbon-monoxide poisoning in January—three times the fatality rate recorded in August and July....

Read more

Pesticides and Child Safety

Although pesticides can be beneficial to society, they can be dangerous if used carelessly or if they are not stored properly and out of the reach of children. According to data collected from the American Association of Poison Control Centers, in 1996 alone, an estimated 78,000 children were involved...

Read more

Scholastic Develops a Program to Teach Tweens About Medication Safety

In 2011, poison centers managed over 140,000 cases of medicine poison exposures involving children ages 6 to 19. An estimated 58,546 emergency department visits were caused by adolescents self-administering medications, and 33.9 percent of these visits resulted from an overdose of OTC medications – about 10,000 per year. Scholastic, in partnership...

Read more

A Hunting We Will Go…

Poison Targets Fall is here, and that means hunting season, too.  So we’re taking aim at some of the poison areas that can be troublesome for the hunter and his family. Let’s start with the substances used to keep firearms in good shape.  Gun bluing protects a gun from rust and...

Read more

How Can I Keep My Family Safe from Salmonella?

Chances are that sometime during the past 24 months, your body was invaded by a bacterium or virus that had taken up residence in a food you ate.  Odds are that it didn’t land you in the hospital but the food poisoning it gave you probably made you feel...

Read more

Poison Center Experts Available Around the Clock

You just found your toddler eating toothpaste-Will that hurt him? What types of poisonous spiders live in the Rio Grande Valley? How do you get rid of hazardous household products? Are those blackberries in your backyard safe to eat? Throughout the year, the Texas Poison Center Network (TPCN) answers...

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Know When to Get Help

Carson’s Story On December 2, 2008, Carson Starkey of Austin, TX, died of alcohol poisoning following a fraternity hazing ritual at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. Carson was 18 years old, finishing his first semester of college. Carson was instructed to split a fifth of rum with...

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Keeping the Office Poison-Free

The vast majority of poison exposures occur in the home but the office has its own risks. For example, in 2008, 1.75 percent of all poison exposures reported to poison centers occurred in the office – putting offices a distant second to homes as sites where poison exposures occurred....

Read more

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent Killer

Each year in the United States, more than 200 accidental deaths are caused by carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. It is considered the leading cause of death from poisoning in the United States. The Texas Poison Center Network documents hundreds of carbon monoxide poisonings each year. The Silent Killer  Commonly known as...

Read more

Food Poisoning: The Unwelcome Dinner Guest

“It must be something I ate”. When you think of a hamburger, what comes to mind? Is it a delicious treat–hot, juicy and fresh from the grill? Or do you imagine “Montezuma’s Revenge” or some other unwelcome gastrointestinal upset? The prime causes of food-borne illness are a collection of...

Read more

Know Your Plants

Safe or Poisonous? Each year over 100,000 people in the United States call Poison Control Centers regarding plant and mushroom exposures. Young children, and sometimes pets, will often chew and eat anything within reach no matter how it tastes. There is no easy “test” for knowing poisonous plants from those...

Read more

Fall Poisonings

Fall is the season of change. The leaves begin to change colors, the temperature begins to drop, and our whole mentality begins to shift towards “the holidays.” First we have Labor Day, then Halloween, followed by Thanksgiving and Christmas. All these holidays bring about a whole different type of...

Read more

Thinking Medication Safety As The Kids Go Back To School

Most schools will soon be back in session and for some Texas children, who take prescription medications during the day, a little extra planning is required before they head off to school or daycare. Every year the Texas Poison Center Network receives calls from schools and daycare centers about...

Read more

Using Insect Repellents Safely

Mosquitoes, biting flies, and ticks can be annoying and sometimes pose a serious risk to public health. In certain areas of the U.S., mosquitoes can transmit diseases like equine and St. Louis encephalitis. Biting flies can inflict a painful bite that can persist for days, swell, and become infected....

Read more

Summer Picnic Tips To Keep You and Your Family Safe from Food Poisoning

Summer is here and most of us take advantage of the warm weather to hold barbecues and picnics. Most common food related illnesses are caused by improper storage or handling of food. Depending on the kind of bacteria causing the problem, symptoms of the most common kinds of food...

Read more

Highly Concentrated “Single-Load Liquid Laundry Packets” Can Cause Serious Harm to Young Children

These new laundry packets dissolve in the washing machine. Because they are colorful and squishy, they are attractive to children. They can look like candy or something fun to play with. Poison centers receive many calls each year about children getting into laundry detergent. Swallowing it often causes mild stomach...

Read more

A Parent’s Guide to Poison Prevention

Because of young children’s curiosity and their unique behavioral patterns (e. g., hand to mouth activity), it is not surprising that over half of the 2.4 million cases of poisonings reported to poison control centers each year involve children less than 5 years of age. Children like the attractive packaging...

Read more

Halloween Safety Tips

Trick or Treaters Carry a flashlight Walk, don’t run Stay on sidewalks Obey all traffic signals Stay in familiar neighborhoods Avoid wearing masks while walking from house to house If no sidewalk, walk on the left side of the road facing traffic Wear clothing with reflective markings or tape Approach house that are lit Stay away from and don’t...

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Who Do I Call If I Think Someone Has Been Poisoned?

According to the CDC, poisoning is the No. 1 cause of injury death in the U. S., with most deaths happening due to drug and medicine misuse and abuse. More than 3.1 million calls were received by poison centers last year. Anyone can call. Poison centers aren’t just for parents...

Read more

New Study Points to Poisoning Dangers for Babies 6 Months and Younger

A new study raises awareness of the dangers of unintentional exposure to poisons for babies 6 months and younger. Traditionally, this has not been an age group that poison center educators have focused on, because infants aren’t up and walking about. But while a young baby may be less mobile,...

Read more

Don’t Google…Just Call!

Isn’t technology great!  We’ve become a technology-based society. If we want to go someplace, we use a GPS device instead of finding a map. Our music is played on devices that fit in the palm of your hand. If we need to look up a definition of a word,...

Read more

Child-Resistant is NOT Child-Proof

It seems as though those hard-to-open bottles have been around forever. And for new parents today, they have. But what is the reason and history behind the child-resistant packages? Back to the 1960s children were dying from poisonings in large numbers. The country developed an education program to warn parents...

Read more

Button Batteries…They Look Innocent

Many toys and electronics are powered by small disc batteries.  These batteries are often accidentally swallowed by small children, and sometimes adults.  Every year in the United States, more than 3,500 people of all ages swallow these miniature disc or “button batteries”.  A study of 2,382 cases of battery...

Read more

Keeping Your Family Safe Around Medicine

Today there are more medicines in the home than ever before, and this increases the potential risk to children of accidental medicine poisoning.   Every year, more than 59,000 young children are seen in emergency rooms because they got into medicine while a caregiver wasn’t looking.  Almost every minute of...

Read more

Substance Abuse

The Dangers of Synthetic Marijuana

Despite current laws, Synthetic Marijuana remains a concern. Street names include K2, Spice, and No More Mr. Nice Guy, to name a few. Even though these drugs are called synthetic marijuana, in reality, they are very different from marijuana and can cause dangerous health effects. One of the scariest...

Read more

Prescription Drug Abuse Up Sharply In Youth

Recently sheriff’s deputies were called to a school because a 12 year old child was passing out methadone pills to another student. The child confirmed swapping parent’s prescription pills was common in school. Parents and teachers need to realize any narcotic drug in the hands of youngsters is potentially life...

Read more

The Dangers of Flakka

Use of a dangerous synthetic cathinone drug called alpha-pyrrolidinopentiophenone (alpha-PDP), popularly known as “Flakka,” is surging in Florida and is also being reported in other parts of the country, according to news reports. In some parts of the country, it is also called “gravel” because of its white crystal...

Read more

The Dangers of Fentanyl

Many questions still remain about the circumstances surrounding the tragic death of Prince in April 2016. However, a report released by the Midwest Medical Examiner’s office concluded that the singer died from an overdose of the opioid fentanyl. Fentanyl is a potent, synthetic opioid analgesic, with a rapid onset and...

Read more

Synthetic Drugs

The Dangers of Synthetic Marijuana

Despite current laws, Synthetic Marijuana remains a concern. Street names include K2, Spice, and No More Mr. Nice Guy, to name a few. Even though these drugs are called synthetic marijuana, in reality, they are very different from marijuana and can cause dangerous health effects. One of the scariest...

Read more

The Dangers of Flakka

Use of a dangerous synthetic cathinone drug called alpha-pyrrolidinopentiophenone (alpha-PDP), popularly known as “Flakka,” is surging in Florida and is also being reported in other parts of the country, according to news reports. In some parts of the country, it is also called “gravel” because of its white crystal...

Read more

The Dangers of Fentanyl

Many questions still remain about the circumstances surrounding the tragic death of Prince in April 2016. However, a report released by the Midwest Medical Examiner’s office concluded that the singer died from an overdose of the opioid fentanyl. Fentanyl is a potent, synthetic opioid analgesic, with a rapid onset and...

Read more