I am a keeper. In fact, I can keep an empty perfume bottle for 5 years – I have a Beyonce Pulse perfume bottle that is older than Jabali (wahala!!!) not for anything but just for optical nutrition…I look at the beautiful bottle and smile!
And even after having Jabali, I extended the keeping madness even in medicines- what a terrible mess! On Sunday, I took Jabali to Nairobi Hospital and was diagnosed with an ear and throat infection. He was given 1001 medicines, which I had nowhere to store them and that is when, like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden after taking the forbidden fruit, my eyes opened shwaaaaaa! and I thought to myself, ‘what if Jabali, with his mighty strength, managed to open just one bottle of Argumentine, cetamol or even Zyrtec and sip it generously?’ The picture that flashed my mind of what can happen made me sweat and shudder!
Keeping medicines after they are no longer needed creates an unnecessary health risk in the home, especially if there are children present. It goes without saying that very young children explore their world with their mouths. And being young, they do not know which items are safe to eat and that means one thing: they are vulnerable to being poisoned. It only takes a few seconds for a child to swallow a dangerous amount of poisonous product and the rest becomes a painful history.
Accidental exposure to medicine in the home is a major source of unintentional poisonings as it provides an opportunity for a child or pet to accidentally take the medicine. Medicines can result in fatality if they are accidentally taken by children. Some of the possible harmful effects include breathing difficulties or heart problems, which can lead to death.
Child proofing your home in a nutshell:
- Never leave vitamin bottles or other medications on kitchen tables, countertops, bedside tables, or dresser tops. Small children may decide to try to copy adults and help themselves.
- Never tell a child that medicine tastes like sweets…this will motivate them to try and eat the sweets even when you are not around.
- Store all medications — prescription and nonprescription — out of sight and out of reach of children, preferably in a locked cabinet. Even items that seem harmless, such as mouthwash, can be extremely dangerous if ingested in large quantities by children. Just because cabinets are high doesn’t mean kids can’t get their hands on what’s in them — they’ll climb up to get to items in the medicine cabinet
- Close your medicine caps tightly after every use. Choose child-resistant caps for medicine bottles, if you’re able to.
- Clean out your medicine cabinet by getting rid of unused or expired medicine. Safely dispose of unneeded medicine in the household trash or flush the medicines down the sink or toilet to remove this risk from your home. Before throwing out your empty medicine packaging, remember to scratch out all personal information on the prescription label to make it unreadable.
For records, I packed all the ‘poison’ in my house and disposed of them. I encourage you to do the same.
Have a safe weekend and a safer home!!!!!