Parents need to establish a routine for disposing of medicine after it is used. Many parents know how to childproof their kitchen cabinets thanks to decades of poison prevention campaigns. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, caregivers and parents aren’t as vigilant when it comes to what’s inside the medicine cabinets.
Children are more likely to overdose than adults, with 20% of children being admitted to emergency rooms after they have been exposed to medication. Research by the CDC shows that a majority of overdoses are caused by medications being left unattended, such as stacked on countertops, tucked away in coat pockets or kept in bathroom cabinets.
These 5 tips are shared by pharmacists to help children avoid accidental poisonings from medicine.
Take a stroll.
Take a walk through the house keeping your child’s field-of-vision in mind. A high spot is the best place to keep medicines, such as in the top of the fridge, on top of the kitchen cabinet or on the highest shelf in the linen closet. It is common to keep medications in the bathroom. However, damp and warm environments are not ideal for medicine storage. The storage area should be at a constant temperature and low humidity.
Don’t forget it.
Looking at prescriptions and vitamins on the counter can help you remember to keep your daily routine. It’s easy for accidents to occur when there are young children. You can set up reminders on your cell phone, keep a log of your medication, or make notes to yourself. But don’t leave any medications out. Children’s medicines are the same–even if they’re sick or you think she will need it again in a few hours.
Click and twist.
Develop the habit of listening to the click, which is the sound that a child safety helmet makes when it is locked. Locking caps are child-resistant but not childproof. The Long Island Poison Center’s study found that locking caps are no better than regular caps in preventing child poisonings from Grandparent’s medication.
Practice what you preach.
Take steps to protect medicines and make sure to explain to your children what medicine is. The CDC warns parents that children should not be told medicine is candy in order to make them take it.
Caring to children requires strong support networks. Medicine safety is no exception. Grandparents and guests may not be used to monitoring their medication. Ask them to help protect your home by hiding any purses, bags or coats with medicine inside.
Precautionary measures are best to prevent medication poisonings. However, it is important to know how to react to suspected poisoning.
Read the label.
Many medications we take come with a label that advises us to keep them below a certain temperature.
This is because certain medicines lose their effectiveness if stored above the minimum temperature. Some may also change in form and make it difficult to use.
Gelatine capsules can soften, creams and ointments may become runny, and suppositories might melt.
Acute conditions medicine should not be affected by prolonged temperatures. However, medicines that are used for chronic conditions should be kept in the safest and most comfortable place possible.
You should also consult your pharmacist before storing your medication in the refrigerator.
Also, medicines should not be kept in bathrooms where heat or humidity could cause them to become damaged. For storage instructions, always refer to the label and the Consumer Medicine Information leaflet. Talk to your pharmacist if there are any questions.
It is best to keep medicines away from sunlight, heat, and moisture. Most medicines should not be kept below 25 degrees Celsius and should not be stored in areas where temperatures can rise, such as near windows.
It can be difficult to transport medicines in hot weather. One of the most important points to remember is to not store medicines in the glovebox or on your dashboard.
You can also check out pharmaceutical warehousing.