Poisoning and contact with hazardous products

Information to which you should pay special attention

If you suspect your child has ingested or come into contact with a hazardous product and he is not breathing or is unconscious, call 9-1-1. See Loss of consciousness.

Essential information to remember

Always have the product that caused the poisoning with you when you call the Québec Poison Control Centre so you can read the label to the person who assists you.

Poisoning is the second leading cause of hospitalization in children 4 and under. It often occurs at home. The most common source of poisoning in small children is medication (vitamins, antibiotics, cold and fever medication) and household products (cleaning products, fuel, personal hygiene products, plants, mushrooms, pesticides, etc.)

What to do?

Ingested product

  • Clean out and rinse your child’s mouth.
  • Do not induce vomiting.
  • Do not try to neutralize the product by giving him milk or anything else.
  • Call the Québec Poison Control Centre at 1-800-463-5060. Do not administer treatment unless instructed to do so by a Poison Control Centre nurse or a health professional.

Product in the eyes or on the skin

  • Rinse the affected area with warm water for at least 15 minutes.
  • Keep your child’s eye open while you rinse it (see Foreign object or chemical product in an eye).
  • Call Québec Poison Control Centre at 1-800-463-5060.

Inhaled product

  • Take your child out into the fresh air.
  • Call Québec Poison Control Centre at 1-800-463-5060.

Good to know

Québec Poison Control Centre is a 24-hour emergency helpline. Staff will explain what to do based on your child’s condition, the product involved, and how it was ingested or what organ it came into contact with (mouth, lungs, skin, or eyes).

Québec Poison Control Centre has a number of prevention publications available on its website at ciusss-capitale nationale.gouv.qc.ca/antipoison/ (Mostly in French).