How to Make Your Home Poison Safe

Health Minute

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More than 90 percent of poisonings happen at home and children younger than 6 make up about half of reasons people call poison centers.

The big culprits are medicationsedications, cleaning supplies, antifreeze, paint thinners, gasoline, pesticides and alcohol.

You can keep your children safe by following these recommendations:


  • Put medicines in containers with safety caps
  • Store all medicines in a locked cabinet
  • Keep toothpaste, soap, shampoo and other everyday items in a different place from dangerous products
  • Take your medicine out of sight from children so they don’t watch and try to copy you
  • Do not call medicine candy because that can be confusing to children
  • Check the label each time before giving someone medicine to make sure you don’t give the wrong amount by accident, especially in the middle of the night
  • Dispose of extra or expired medicines. Find a drug collection program in your area. Do not flush medicines down the toilet or pour them down the drain because they can contaminate the water supply


  • Put paint, paint thinners, pesticides, fertilizers and other items like these in a locked cabinet so children can’t get into them
  • Check coal, kerosene and wood appliances to make sure they work right


  • Lock cabinets that contain medicines, cleaners, furniture polish, lye, dishwashing soap and other dangerous products
  • Use a safety lock/latch when you keep any of these poisonous items under your sink

Whole house

  • Have carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms throughout your house and check them frequently to make sure they work properly. Your local fire department can recommend how many and where to put these in your home

By taking these precautions with potentially poisonous medications, cleaners and other substances, you will be doing your best to keep your family safe from harm.

It's easy to get the care you need.

See a Premier Physician Network provider near you.