Based on research paper 'Prevention of ingestion injuries in children' by A.B Van As, M Arnold, and A. Numanoglu. 



How to Prevent Ingestion Injuries in Babies

When was the last time you looked at your home? From where you’re standing things might look fine, but how about from a baby or toddler’s point of view? If you were to crawl around, what would you find? Most babies and toddlers accidentally swallow things in and around the home, and if you’re not careful, your little one could be in trouble. 

Think Like a Baby

You’re curious, everything you see is new, and all you want to do is explore. Because of their inquisitive nature, children under the age of 5 are more likely to taste or ingest foreign objects.

If you suspect your toddler may have swallowed something they shouldn’t have, here are a few things to look out for:

  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Drooling
  • A loud, high-pitched, crowing breath sound
  • Vomiting
  • Signs of peritonitis like fever, chills, and difficulty passing urine

Most Commonly Ingested Items

  • Household cleaning agents
  • Most round objects like coins, marbles and button batteries
  • Plastic and metal, like toy parts

Tips to Keep Kids Safe

Lock it away
Store all medication out of reach and sight of children in a locked cupboard.

Don’t rely on packaging
Child-resistant doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s childproof.

Don’t leave medication lying around
Your little one could easily find and swallow them.

Don’t store detergents under the sink 
Household cleaning agents are one of the most commonly swallowed items. Don’t leave them in easily accessible cupboards like under the kitchen sink.

Use safety latches
If your cupboards have no locks, try using latches.

Be prepared
Keep your child’s doctor’s number, the poison control centre number (0861 555 777), your work, cellphone and a close relative’s number on a place that is always visible, like the fridge. During an emergency it helps to have important numbers readily available. 




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