If your baby swallows something poisonous

Your baby could come into contact with poisonous substances when they’re inside or outside the house. Swallowed poisons include drugs, plants, fungi, berries, and household items such as washing tabs.

If you think your baby may have swallowed something poisonous, the signs may include:

  • • Finding medicines, empty packaging or household products near to your baby
  • • They may start vomiting
  • • They may draw up their knees indicating stomach pains
  • • In severe cases they may have seizures or become unresponsive.

Read the advice below to find out what to do if your baby has swallowed something poisonous.

Watch our video - what to do if your baby has swallowed something poisonous

What to do – swallowed poisons

Try to find out what your baby has swallowedIf their mouth or lips are burning, give them sips of water or milk

1. Try to find out what your baby has swallowed, how much of it and when they swallowed it. Look for clues – like plants or containers near where they have been playing.

2. Call 999/112 for emergency help and give them as much information you can.

3. While you wait check that your baby is breathing normally, and if they respond to you.

4. If they do not respond open their airway, check for breathing and see if they need CPR.

5. Don’t try to make them be sick, but if your baby is sick try to collect some of their vomit to give to the healthcare professionals – they may be able to identify the poison with this.

6. If what they have swallowed is burning their mouth or lips, give them sips of water or milk until help arrives.

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