What To Do If Child Ingest Naphthalene or Mothballs?

Discovering that your child had ingested a toxic solution, like naphthalene and phenyl is one of the most alarming moments. Staying calm, acting swiftly, and stomach washing can help.

Harleen Kaur
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What To Do If Child Ingest Naphthalene or Mothballs?

What To Do If Child Ingest Naphthalene or Mothballs?

Discovering that my toddler had ingested a naphthalene solution, also known as phenyl, was one of the most alarming moments I've experienced as a parent. I rushed her to the emergency room, attempting to induce vomiting—a mistake I later learned from the doctor. This experience urged me to share insights with fellow parents. If your child ingests a toxic substance like naphthalene, mothballs, or similar chemicals, take immediate action.

What To Do If Child Ingest Naphthalene or Mothballs?

Act Swiftly and Seek Professional Help

  1. Emergency Services: Remain calm and contact emergency services or your doctor immediately. Timeliness is paramount.

  2. Wipe or rinse out the mouth.
  3. Give a serving size of water to drink.
  4. Avoid Home Remedies: Refrain from inducing vomiting without professional advice.

Understanding Gastric Lavage ( Stomach washing)

  1. Stomach washing: In severe cases or when unsure of the quantity ingested, seek medical advice regarding stomach washing also known as gastric lavage. This procedure aims to remove toxic substances from the stomach, but it's only recommended based on specific circumstances.

  2. Medical Assessment: Gastric lavage decisions are based on factors such as substance type, quantity, and the child’s health and age.

Recognizing Symptoms and Risks

  1. Symptoms of Ingestion: If a child has ingested naphthalene, watch for symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, restlessness, or paleness. Severe cases might include seizures or coma, warranting immediate attention.

  2. Risks of Ingestion: Naphthalene is highly toxic and requires immediate medical attention. Serious health issues can arise if not treated on time.

Preventive Measures and Lessons Learned

  1. Secure Storage: Acknowledge the importance of storing such items out of children's reach, preventing such incidents.

  2. Quick Action Saves: Acting swiftly and seeking professional help can significantly reduce potential harm to the child.

In the wake of this incident, I realized the importance of vigilance and ensuring household items like naphthalene balls or similar toxic substances are stored securely. The panic of such moments underscores the necessity of preparedness and awareness among parents and caregivers. Stay informed, act promptly, and prioritize the safety of our little ones.

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