As conscientious parents, most of us know to keep household cleaning products well out of the reach of children, especially toddlers. Those curious little people are apt to grab anything they come across in their travels, and most of the time, it ends up in their mouths.
But there are other dangers lurking in our homes, things that seem so harmless that we leave them out on bathroom and kitchen counters, well within their reach. These are the personal care and cosmetic products that are packaged to be eye-catching or made to smell good — like fruit or vanilla, for instance — which can be irresistible to kids.
Increasingly, this dangerous combination has been sending young children to hospitals with injuries ranging from poisonings to burns. According to a report by the Abigail Wexner Research Institute in Ohio, nearly 65,000 children were treated at emergency rooms across the country between 2002 and 2016 for cosmetic-related injuries.
The review of National Poison Data System records found nearly 60% of the kids were under age 2. Most of those hurt were boys, and poisoning was overwhelmingly the most common injury. Nail care, hair care and skin care products each accounted for about a quarter of the injuries.
The researchers noted that parents may not even think these products are potentially dangerous for their kids because cosmetics are not in child-resistant packaging and they typically don’t have warning labels. But don’t let your guard down.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends parents treat these products the same way they do medications: store them locked up and away from inquisitive tiny humans.