You love your family and your home want what’s best for your children’s safety, but you might not realize the dangers hidden in your house. Don’t worry; once you’re aware, you can easily protect your children from harm and avoid dangerous situations.
We have compiled the best information from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to help you easily protect your home and children.
For Allergies and Asthma:
1. Test your home for radon with low cost kits you can buy from your nearby supply store or online
2. Open windows or use fans to let in fresh air whenever someone uses chemicals in the home or garage
3. Wash bedding, including blankets, pillow covers, and mattress pads in hot water every week to keep down dust mites
4. Don’t leave out pet food or water overnight if you have problems with cockroaches and other pests
For Mold and Mildew:
5. Check the filter in your air conditioner a couple times each year and change when needed
6. When you use your air conditioner, use the “auto fan” setting to reduce mold and moisture
7. Do not throw chemicals in the garbage or down the drain
8. Use a back flow prevention device on your faucet to keep pollutants from washing back into your drinking water
9. If your pipes have lead, never use hot water from the tap for drinking, cooking, or making baby formula because hot water takes more lead out of the pipes
10. Even in Florida, lead can enter drinking water. Ask your doctor about testing for lead, and wash your children’s hands and face often with soap and water, especially before they eat
For Household Products:
11.Clean up mold with a mix of laundry detergent or dishwashing soap and water OR chlorine bleach with soap and water. Do not mix chlorine bleach with any product that contains ammonia
12. Read the label of household products and look for words like “caution,” “warning,” “flammable,” “harmful,” “danger,” and “poison.” If a product has warning words on it, keep it out of reach of children and don’t eat, drink, or smoke when using the product.
13. Always store dangerous chemicals in the container they came in. Never put them in another container, especially one you might eat or drink from.
14. If a product says “work in well ventilated area,” use it only outside or with the windows open.
15. Buy Syrup of Ipecac at your local drugstore. The drug makes a person throw up and should only be used when a doctor or the Poison Control Center says it’s okay. Sometimes throwing up can make the poisoning worse, according to the USDHUD
16. Use a plunger to unclog sinks instead of chemicals
17. Always read the label to find out how to dispose of the chemicals and the container
18. Call 1-800-222-1222 for your local Poison Control Center
19. Make sure people eat at the table, and don’t let them walk around with food
20. Don’t leave dish water in the sink. Pests need water to survive.
21. Get rid of stacks of newspaper, papers, bags, and cardboard boxes that pests can live in
22. Place all pesticides out of reach of children
23. Wash clothing you wore while using a pesticide in a separate load of laundry
When Preparing Food (according to the USDHUD):
24. Wash and scrub all fruits and vegetables under running tap water
25. After washing, peel fruits and vegetables when possible
26. Throw away the outer leaves of leafy vegetables like lettuce
27. Trim fat from meat and skin off fish and poultry to avoid pesticides that collect in fat
General Home Safety:
28. Keep children away from medications and lock medications up
29. Keep children out of basements, laundry rooms, and garages
30. Store matches and other heat sources away from children
31. Keep space heaters out of busy areas, doorways and halls
To prevent choking and suffocation:
32. Don’t let your children eat hot dogs, nuts, popcorn and hard candy
33. Make sure children drink sitting up
34. Don’t let your children play with balloons
35. Keep your children away from coins, marbles, and buttons
36. Don’t let children play with cars or old appliances
37. Read a toy’s package to make sure it’s right for your children
Around the pool:
38. Watch children under 12 at all times around a pool
39. All pools, hot tubs, and spas should have a fence at least five feet high around them
40. Take all toys out of the swimming area so children won’t be tempted go back in
If you have any concerns about any condition you might have as a result of something in your home, contact a SIMED Primary care physician today by calling 352-224-2225 or scheduling your appointment online.