Toilet Bowl Deodorizer

Julie Weber Is This A Poison

Toxicity:  Toilet bowl deodorizers are irritating to the skin and the gastrointestinal tract.

Expected symptoms: If toilet bowl deodorizers are eaten, it can result in stomach upset, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. If it comes in contact with the skin it can cause redness and irritation.

What to do:  Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water. Rinse out the mouth by swishing water and spitting it out. Drink some water to wash the deodorizer down to the stomach.

Toilet bowl deodorizers are available as a clip-on to the side of the toilet bowl, or as a gel disc that clings to the toilet bowl. The product cleans and deodorizes the toilet bowl with every flush. Frequently children will dig their fingers into the deodorizer and take a taste or remove it from the toilet and take a bite. Most times, there is not a lot of the deodorizer eaten possibly because of the taste. The deodorizers today tend to be detergent based and are mildly irritating.

These incidents also involve the unpleasant thought of your child playing in the toilet bowl and toilet water. Keep in mind, most children do some exploring in the bathroom at some point. Wash exposed skin with a generous lather of soap and rinse well with lukewarm water after the exposure. Make sure to keep the bathroom door closed to prevent future poisoning events.

If you find your child has eaten toilet bowl deodorizer, do not panic. Take the it away from them, wipe out the mouth with a soft, wet cloth and give them some water to drink. If problems start or you have questions, call the Missouri Poison Center right away at 1-800-222-1222. The poison center is open all day, every day for poisoning emergencies and questions.

Special note: In the past, deodorizers were made of paradichlorobenzene, which can pose risk for toxicity, more so than the detergent based deodorizers. Paradichlorobenzene has a distinctive odor, and is sometimes used as an ingredient in mothballs. At room temperature this solid turns into a gas, therefore exposures involve both ingestion and breathing in the fumes. If you suspect your child has been exposed to this type of toilet bowl deodorizer, call the Missouri poison center right away at 1-800-222-1222.

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