In order to know when and how to treat someone who has come into contact with a poisonous substance, you must first be familiar with what a poison is. Poison comes in 4 forms: solids (such as pills or tablets), liquids (such as gasoline), sprays (such as household spray cleansers) and gases (such as carbon monoxide). Some examples of common poisons are:
- Prescription, over-the-counter and illegal drugs
- Food supplements, like vitamins, minerals and herbal products
- Nail polish and nail polish remover
- Drain and toilet bowl cleaners
- Bites and stings, including snake and spider bites and wasp and bee stings
Additionally, poisons can be identified if it causes harm to someone when:
- Used in the wrong way.
- Used by the wrong person (in the case of prescription medicines).
- Used in the wrong amount.
Make sure the phone numbers you need to know in case of a poison emergency are posted near kitchen and bathroom telephones. Visit the Poison Help website for a free magnet.