Rise in Kids Eating Laundry Detergent Pods

Sweet-smelling and colorful, but toxic, single-use laundry detergent packs or “pods” are causing a rising rate of poisoning in kids who confuse them for candy.

All of the latest childhood poisonings required emergency evaluation and treatment, with six of them linked to Tide Pods, two to Purex Ultra Packs, and one to All Mighty Paks. So far, no deaths have been reported, but nationally, a number of kids have required hospitalization—sometimes on ventilators—for several days after eating detergent pods.

All of those kids are now out of the hospital, with no long-term health problems or complications reported. Typically their symptoms cleared up in one week or less. Other pod-poisoning cases were successfully treated at home, with the parents following advice from poison control centers, or the kids were evaluated and treated in emergency rooms without the need for a hospital stay.

Specifically, the four frightening effects of biting into the miniature packets (according to CPCS) are:
  • significant nausea and vomiting
  • respiratory distress, in many cases requiring ventilators temporarily
  • eye injuries occurring as a child bites into the pod and gets the product in his or her eyes
  • metabolic abnormalities—doctors are not sure why, but the pods may be more toxic than standard powder.
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erick99 Aug 03, 2012
This is how evolution works - selection adaption. Kids who eat pods don't grow up and have children so the genetic predisposition to eat pods gets weeded out of the gene pool. You gotta love science (and laundry pods).
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FibroMom Jun 27, 2012
OMG! I NEVER even thought of a child trying to EAT a Laundry Detergent Pod! I better pass this article on to my daughters that have little ones at home! Thank you for posting this!
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shimisi Jun 27, 2012
Make sure to keep those pods away from the little ones!
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