PillsWe’re half-way through Poison Prevention Week and Tammy Noble, a registered nurse and spokeswoman for the Iowa Poison Control Center, says it’s important to raise awareness about the statewide hotline and about making one’s home safe from potential threats.

“Last year, we had a little over 41,000 phone calls, that ends up being over 100 calls a day,” Noble says. “Most of them are exposure calls but we do get some calls that are simply for information, like a mom that wants to know if this plant she has in her house is a poisonous plant or not.”

A vast majority of the “exposure” calls, where someone has been exposed to a potential poison, involve one type of medication. Noble says, “The number-one item happens to be pain medicine, things like acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, it’s aspirin, ibuprofen, on up to stronger medicines like narcotics you might get for a tooth ache or back pain or after surgery.”

If there are potentially dangerous items in your house, from medication to cleaning supplies that you no longer use, she suggests the best course of action is to throw it out before some child gets their hands on it.

Learn more at www.iowapoison.org or by calling the Sioux City-based hotline: 800-222-1222.

(Reporting by Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)