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Poison control hotlines seeing increase in calls due to accidental poisoning

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ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. -- Ever since the stay-at-home orders went into effect in March, poison control hotlines have seen an increase in calls due to poison exposure.

The Michigan Poison Center has seen a nine percent increase in calls for accidental poisoning from home cleaning supplies. Since March 22, 2020 Michigan has received a total of 6,011 calls. In February they received around 560 calls.

On a national level, there has been an increase of 20 percent. Since the coronavirus outbreak, some people are buying industrial strength cleaners since they can’t find regular household cleaning supplies in stores.

The Michigan Posion Center Educator, Denise Kolakowski said using industrial strength cleaners is not recommended. However, if you do use it, she said to be careful because it’s stronger than regular cleaning supplies.

 “When we’re looking at somebody who has ingested industrial cleaners,  that have detergents that have are more caustic, or if we’re looking at industrial bleach, or any other industrial type of products. Those chemicals that are contained in those products can cause burns,” Kolakowski said.

The poison educator also mentioned their big concern is people who are exposed for a long period of time or who have ingested industrial strength cleaning supplies, because they’d have to refer them to the emergency room. If you or someone in your household accidentally ingests hand sanitizer, cleaner or any type of disinfectant, you are asked to call the Poison Control Hotline at 1-800-222-1222.

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