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769 Children Hospitalized For Mistaking Laundry Packets For Candy

All across the country, about 1 child per day is hospitalized in the US after eating a colorful laundry or dishwasher packet. This often bright and colorful packets attract young children in the same way that candy does, and some of them ingest them. Certainly more than the 769 children have actually chewed or swallowed these packets, but that many have actually required hospital treatment to counteract the poisonous effects of the laundry or dish washer packets.

769 Children Hospitalized For Mistaking Laundry Packets For Candy

Tide Pods Warning

Laundry and diswashing detergent pods are reported to send approximately 1 child per day to hospitals across the US. (Image from Tide.com)

These packets have been catching on in popularity, since they provide a simple and convenient solution to traditional laundry detergents. These packets provide a pre-measured and precise amount of cleaning agents that make it easy to put the right amount into each load. Additionally, the packets typically prevent spills and messes that can occur frequently with traditional laundry powders or liquids.

Part of the problem is that the size of the packets is often small enough for it to fit in the mouths of young children. Another issue is that parents are not keeping their laundry and dishwasher supplies in a secure area, where you would normally expect for poisonous and hazardous materials to be stored in a household with children. Lastly, the bright and colorful design of many of the pods and packets that is designed to attract sales on the grocery store shelves is also attracting young kids, just like bright colored sugary candy does.

After getting the pods or packets into their mouths, the semi-gelatinous casing that contains the cleaning chemicals begins to dissolve in the child’s saliva. These outer coatings are water soluble, so that the packet releases the cleaning chemicals after submersion in the washing machine or dishwasher. If the child manages to actually swallow the packet, it will then continue to dissolve and release the chemicals into the child’s stomach, where it becomes a very serious health risk.

Hospitals around the US have reported that they are seeing at least one patient per day nationwide that needs serious treatment for ingesting one of these packets or pods. Parents should be warned to keep these items in a secure area, out of reach from children of all ages. Some responsible companies like Tide have already begun to issue warnings to help remind parents to keep their children away from these products.

769 Children Hospitalized For Mistaking Laundry Packets For Candy.

About Steven Kenniff

Lives in Phoenix, AZ. Graduated from Arizona State University in 2005. Writes for American Live Wire, GM Roadster and Northstar Media