What Is The Best First Aid Advice For Poisoning In Australia


Table of Contents

Poisoning is the act of contaminating a source with a chemical additive, or it can stem organically from a plant, as in the fragrance you might inhale, or from venomous creatures, if bitten or injected. It might come from the toxic food you have consumed. Poisoning can occur in many ways. In general, there are countless types of poison. Poisonous substances can enter the body by ingestion, injection, absorption, or inhalation.

Common poisoning causes include cleaning products, carbon monoxide, eating green potatoes or fungi mistaken for mushrooms. If a suspected poisoning occurs and the person is unconscious, seek immediate medical attention either at an emergency department or by calling for an ambulance on 000 in Australia to seek medical care.

Ideally, prevent poisoning from occurring by keeping dangerous items well above children’s curious accessibility. Unless directed by calling the Poison Information centre or the directions on the bottle expressly state otherwise, NEVER induce vomiting. Young children will succumb quickly and may stop breathing. If this happens, dial 000 and then begin CPR.

Skin Contact

· Remove contaminated clothing

· Avoid contact with the poison

· Flood skin with running cold water

· Wash gently with soap and water and rinse well

Enters The Eyes

· Flood the eye with saline or cold water from a running tap or a cup/jug

· Continue to flush for 15 minutes, holding the eyelids open

If Swallowed

· Give a sip of water to wash out their mouth

· DO NOT try to make them vomit

· DO NOT use Ipecac Syrup

If Inhaled

If safe (don’t go into an unsafe environment):

· Immediately get the casualty to fresh air

· Avoid breathing fumes

· Open doors and windows

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Poisoning?

· Unconsciousness

· Nausea and vomiting

· Blurred vision

· Headache

· Burning pain in mouth and throat

· Seizures

· Respiratory arrest

· Cardiac arrest

My Child Swallowed A Button Battery, What Do I Do?

Young Children love to swallow button batteries, and this can cause severe internal damage. If you suspect a child has swallowed a battery of any kind, the first step is to try and determine:

· The type of battery

· The battery identification number, found on the package or from a matching battery

· The casualty’s age, weight, and condition

· Don’t allow them to eat or drink anything

· If the battery contents touch the eyes or skin, wash with water for 15 minutes

· If in nose or ears, seek urgent medical help

· DO NOT use nose or ear drops

What Signs Suggest A Child Might Have Swallowed A Battery?

Button batteries that have been swallowed give similar symptoms to a common cold.

· Fever

· Coughing/difficulty swallowing

· Drooling

· Lethargy

· Irritability

· Abdominal pain/vomiting Loss of appetite

· Dark or bloody bowel movements

. Button batteries – in-ear or nose

· Pain and/or a discharge from the nose or ear

What Do I Do If The Child Is Unconscious?

·       If unconscious, call 000 first, then place on the side and maintain the airway.

·       If unconscious and not breathing, call 000 first, then perform CPR.

 Protect yourself – wear gloves, use a face mask, wash contaminated area, do not contact the poison without PPE in place, and it is safe to do so.

· Try to Establish what has been taken, how much and when. Look for evidence or ask the person if they are conscious and able to speak.

·       CALL 13 11 26 POISONS INFORMATION CENTRE to obtain medical advice promptly.

·       Call the ambulance Dial (000) and ask for an ambulance

·       Treat and monitor as advised and follow directions if given to you.

Related Videos


Poisoning prevention in the home | SA Health

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