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First Steps in a Poisoning Emergency

  • Follow these basic steps at the first sign of a poisoning

    If the person inhaled poison

    Get to fresh air right away. Call the toll-free Poison Help line (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center.

    If the person has poison on the skin

    Take off any clothing the poison touched. Rinse skin with running water for 15 to 20 minutes. Call the toll-free Poison Help line (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center.

    If the person has poison in the eyes

    Rinse eyes with running water for 15 to 20 minutes. Call Poison Help (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center.

    In some cases, you should not try to give first aid

    If the person swallowed the wrong medicine or too much medicine: Call Poison Help (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center.
     

  • Right away call the toll-free Poison Help line (1-800-222-1222), which connects you to your local poison center. Every poisoning is different.

    Treatment advice will depend on the type and amount of poison involved. The child’s age, weight, and medical history will affect treatment, too.

  • No. Activated charcoal addresses certain poisons, but it is difficult to use. Your poison center will decide if activated charcoal should be used. The poison center may call a hospital to advise what type of treatment to use.