In 2017 alone, there were 10,570 exposures to liquid laundry detergent packets according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC). These laundry pods can be attractive to both children and adults, however, serious effects may occur after ingestion. The pods look like play items because they are soft and colorful and often resemble familiar items like candy, toys, and teething products.
There has been a “trend” on the internet joking about the desire for teens and adults to eat the laundry pods. There are videos and images placing tide pods in food items and then asking “what if?” Some individuals have taken it a step further and have actually ingested the product while posting their experience online. Biting into a laundry pod is no joke since there is the potential for serious symptoms.
Ingestion of the liquid has caused excessive vomiting, wheezing and gasping. Some children exposed get very sleepy. Some have had breathing problems serious enough to need a ventilator to help them breathe. There have also been reports of corneal abrasions (scratches to the eyes) when the detergent gets into the eyes of either a child or an adult.
- Always keep detergent containers closed, sealed, and stored up high, out of the reach of children.
- Follow the instructions on the product label.
- Call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222 immediately if you suspect someone has come in contact with this detergent