Halloween is approaching and with it, the customary bags of candy. Children anticipate sweet treats this time of year, which may cause them to mistake medication, not properly stored, for candy. CHOC Children’s pharmacists warn parents to be particularly vigilant this time of year, helping ensure treats don’t turn into “tricks” for little ghosts and goblins.
Adults should follow these simple medication safety tips:
- Use the word “medicine,” not “candy,” when talking about medications
- Store medicine out of the reach of children
- Do not leave handbags, containing medicine or other potential hazards, on the floor where children can find them
- Properly close medicine caps on tamper-resistant bottles
- Read the label before taking or giving medicine
- Take medicine out of the sight of children, who learn by copying adults
- Properly dispose of medication. Even expired medications can have harmful effects when taken inappropriately
More than 50 percent of poison exposures involve medications.
In any case of possible ingested poison, call the Poison Control Center at (800) 222-1222 and be ready to provide responses to the following:
- Who took the medicine?
- What did they take?
- How much did they take?
- How long has it been?
- How are they behaving?
Call 911 if the person has difficulty breathing or is unresponsive.
For more information, visit the California Poison Control System website.