10 ways to keep medicine out of the reach of children
They're curious. Love to climb. And tend to get into everything. In fact, sometimes the most dangerous thing to a child can be herself. So, how can you protect your little explorer from the dangers of finding and ingesting medicine?
Store medicine in a locked
cabinet — The safest place to store medicine is out of the
sight and reach of children. This can be a high cabinet or a closet,
and it should be locked at all times.
Use child-resistant caps
for added security — If you have children in your house,
all medicine containers should have child-resistant caps. However,
medicine should still be stored in a locked location, such as a high
cabinet or closet.
Don't rely on child-resistant
packaging alone — Bear in mind that child-resistant doesn't
mean childproof. This means that a determined child may find a way
to open even the most secure bottle caps.
Keep medicine in its original
container — Don't switch containers for pills and liquids,
otherwise they could be mistaken for something else. Also, do not
use a medicine if the container doesn't have a label or the label
Take medicine with you if
you're called away — If you get called to the phone or front
door while you're administering medicine to yourself or your child,
don't leave the container behind where your child could get a hold
Replace lids and return
medicine to its storage place — It may be tempting to leave
medicine out if you're going to take another dose again soon. But
children act quickly, so even medicine left out for a moment can be
Do not refer to medicine
as candy — Getting your child to take his medicine by making
him think it's candy can be very dangerous because most children will
seek out candy. It is safer to help your child understand that medicine
is medicine by calling it by its proper name.
Be careful of purses and
bags — Remember to keep your purse and diaper bag out of
your child's reach. Also, be careful about guests' purses, overnight
bags, and suitcases, because they may contain medicine.
Unpack medicine first — A bottle of coated pills can look like candy to a young child.
So, you should remove medicine from grocery bags before your child
starts investigating the bags.
Checking to make sure that medicine is out of reach is really about seeing things from your child's perspective. Have you looked in every cabinet the way your child will? Have you inspected on your hands and knees to see things that your child can? The checklist provided here can help you make a quick and thorough inspection.
This checklist is an Adobe PDF document, which requires you to have the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. You can download Acrobat Reader at the Adobe Website.