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Laundry Detergent Pods More Dangerous Than Ever For Kids

The Short of It

Single-use laundry detergent pods pose a greater danger to kids than ever, due to more highly concentrated formulas.

The Lowdown

A new study by the American Association of Poison Control Centers, which was published today in the journal Pediatrics, reveals that single serving pods of laundry soap are harming more children now than two years ago. According to NPR, new highly concentrated single-load formulations are to blame.

Alarmingly, last year poison centers received reports of nearly 11,000 incidents of exposure to these highly concentrated pods of laundry detergent by children ages 5 and younger. That number is up from 2012.

The problem is that children mistake the brightly colored pods for toys or candy and put them in their mouths. The resulting complications can be serious.

The Upshot

If your child exhibits symptoms such as excessive vomiting, wheezing, gasping or extreme sleepiness, contact a doctor right away or go to the emergency room. He may have been exposed to the detergent pods. In some cases, children needed ventilators to help them breathe after ingesting the detergent. Other injuries involving the pods included eye abrasions.

Most importantly, store the potentially dangerous packets out of reach of children and pets. Or, buy liquid laundry detergent instead and avoid the risk of injury to your kids all together.

Meanwhile, some manufacturers are making efforts to improve warning labeling and packaging on their single-use pods, which could help mitigate the issue. Read more tips from Parenting on "Poison Prevention" for kids.

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