Detergent Pod Dangers

Several Texoma children have been sent to the emergency room in the last month after swallowing detergent pods. 

Doing laundry is a chore many of us dread. Rosilie Whitaker sometime enjoys washing clothes on occasion with her grandchildren.

“They help me wash, but I don’t let them use the detergent,” said Whitaker.

Whitaker uses the new detergent pods. An alternative more and more people have been turning to since it was first introduced on the market in 2010.

The product marketed as a simple, fast and clean way to do laundry, has landed a four Texoma children in the hospital at United Regional.

“In the last month alone from ingestions, two in which had to be transferred for a higher level of care,” said Dr. John Hilmi, Director of Emergency Care at the hospital.

Dr. Hilmi said this has been a national trend over the last couple of years.

"Seventy percent of household ingestions of household chemicals with children are caused by these little pods,” said Dr. Hilmi.

According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers there were 10,387 reports of exposure to highly packets of laundry detergent by children five years and younger.

Health officials said when ingested they could cause some serious problems.

“Since it is alkaline it causes mycosis of the airway as well as in the esophagus,” said Dr. Hilmi. "In severe status children may actually have a decreased mental status.”

If your child ingests a detergent or dishwasher pod, symptoms include vomiting, respiratory issues, by wheezing, coughing or gagging.

Dr. said the best thing for you to do to protect the little ones at home is to store detergent or dishwasher up high and out of reach of children.

“Kids are so fast they get into everything. All it takes is one second or two seconds to have your eyes away from them and they'll get into something,” said Whitaker. 
For a poison emergency in the U.S. call 1-800-222-1222

Jimmie Johnson, Newschannel 6