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Kids Poisoned by Parent’s Prescriptions

Here’s something we may all need to be more resolute about: keeping prescription meds away from curious kids. Accidental overdoses of some of the most frequently used medications are on the rise in young children.

“Where I see a lot of those prescription overdoses happen is they are playing around in mom or grandma’s purse and get ahold of somebody’s thyroid medications,” says pediatrician Dr. Eric Jones, he is on medical staff of Lee Memorial Health System.

It’s those seemingly innocuous drugs used to treat the thyroid, high cholesterol, diabetes and angina that are sending children to the emergency room. The risk was highest for kids five and younger, who might pick up a pill and try it. Making it important to keep tabs on your tablets.

“If we’re putting it in different container for older people to be able to open it, it becomes a lot easier for your typical toddler and kid to get into.”

Over a ten-year span the number of poisonings in young children went up by a third. It follows the rise in usage of prescription drugs which are up 10%. Toddlers have no intention of snitching drugs, but are likely to copy-cat behaviors they see.

“The things kids want to get into are the things they see adults getting into. So you take your medicine everyday and they want to take their medicine everyday,” says Dr. Jones.

The best example you can set for any children who might be watching- is to play it safe. And keep any and all medications secure.

View More Health Matters video segments at leememorial.org/healthmatters/

Lee Memorial Health System in Fort Myers, FL is the largest network of medical care facilities in Southwest Florida and is highly respected for its expertise, innovation and quality of care. For nearly a century, we’ve been providing our community with everything from primary care treatment to highly specialized care services and robotic assisted surgeries.

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