Hello Poison Centre, Kathy Speaking...

As a parent, when faced with a medical emergency, you just hope that you have the knowledge and skills needed to respond confidently and calmly.

Like many of you, I have read the stories and watched the You Tube videos and never imagined that my child or I would be in a situation which had the potential to be really awful.  

As a mum and also an employee at CPR Kids, I thought I had taken every precaution and baby-proofed our home completely.

Cleaning products and poisonous liquids were locked securely in the cabinet out of reach. Tick. Batteries on the highest shelf. Tick. Latch on the garage door secure. Tick. Windows secured. Tick. Bath plug out and buckets upside down. Tick. Saucepans on back hot plate. Tick, but… just at the end of nap time my little 2 year old got out of bed looking for a drink.  Nothing wrong with that, I hear you say except...

when I found him in the bathroom he was holding an almost empty bottle of cologne. The smell from the bathroom still haunts me. I felt panicked and had so many questions.

If he didn’t drink it, what had he done? Had he poured it in the sink? How much did he drink? How can I help him? What do I do? Is this serious? Do I need an ambulance?

I took a deep breath and collected myself and recalled the valuable information I had received from the CPR Kids Knowledge For Life course I had attended. I had programmed the Poisons Information Centre number, 131126 into my phone. I had also been given the Poisons Information fridge magnet which outlined the first aid required in this type of emergency.

The staff at the Poison Information Centre were great. They are the experts and had heard and seen it all. They calmly told me to watch my son closely and if he were to get a little ’tipsy’ or started to vomit, I was to take him to the hospital Emergency Department.

At the time of the call, he did seem fine but a little later I noticed he was behaving unusually. Immediately my mummy instinct kicked in and I knew I needed to take him to the hospital.

Over the next couple of hours, a few ‘vital checks’, and a lollypop later, we left the hospital and our first Emergency Department experience was behind us. In this instance, he was fine. The paediatrician who was taking care of us and the wonderful paediatric nurses at CPR Kids reassured me that I had done the right thing.

I am relieved and reassured that I had the confidence to respond in the way I did. Knowledge is so powerful.

To find out more about our Knowledge for Life Classes, please visit: https://www.cprkids.com.au/knowledge-for-life/