The Woodward News

Local News

December 15, 2013

Officials offer tips on making holiday safer for kids

Woodward, Okla. — With the Christmas Season in full swing, it’s easy to get focused on all there is to do and forget little details that could mean the difference between having a wonderful season and a tragic accident.

That is the message from Oklahoma Poison Control Center education coordinator Whitney Kemp

Nearly half of the 48,000 calls made per year to Oklahoma Poison Control Center are made on behalf of children under the age of five, she said.

This time of year can provide the conditions for the “perfect storm.” Busy, distracted parents and grandparents could unknowingly create a situation where children could possibly have access to someone’s medication, when normally their parents are careful about such things.

“Visitors might leave medications out or in a suitcase, overnight bag or purse,” Kemp said. “Kids like to get into these things.”

Woodward County health educator Jolena Graves echoes that concern and adds her voice to the encouragement for folks to slow down, even when you feel overwhelmed.

“I have been waking up in the night going over all that I have to get done before Christmas,” she said. “So it can be a stressful time.”

Graves noted that when grandparents, who have long since raised their children and are not used to having grandchildren around, come to visit, they are not thinking about little ones who might get into a tempting suitcase left open.

For that reason, Graves suggests offering guests a safe place to put up their medications.

“You may not even have grandkids, but you may be visiting places that do have children,” she said.

The key is to stop and take one moment to think about your medications when you arrive somewhere, she said.

According to the Oklahoma Poison Control Center, more than 67,000 children visit this nation’s emergency rooms every year for medication poisoning.

But Graves adds that during the holidays, a lot is happening  and things such as cleaning items are sometimes left where children can get at them.

Kemp agrees.

For children, a container with say, window cleaner can look as appetizing as some sports drinks, Kemp said.

For that reason, the Oklahoma Poison Control website offers these ideas to insure that the holidays are a time of celebration not tragedy.

• Keep potentially dangerous household products in one area of the home.

• Make sure the household products are stored in their original containers.

• Medications should be kept in their original packaging or containers.

• Label dangerous household products with some kind of sticker indicating it’s “yuck,” and teach your children what the sticker means.

• Keep cabinets and areas with the dangerous products locked.

• Make sure medications are stored up and away.

• Remind friends and family to follow these guidelines to keep kids safe.

Kemp said if a parent suspects their child might have come in contact with a potential poison to call Oklahoma Poison Control right away at (800) 222-1222. A pharmacist or nurse will take your call.  

Just before your guests arrive, simply do a walk-through of the home and take a few seconds to make sure all the possibly poisonous substances are back where they belong, out of reach and secure, Graves said.

Text Only
Local News
  • State board votes again to delay education plan

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma's State Board of Education voted on Wednesday for a second time to delay a formal plan for adopting new education standards in math and English amid opposition to the proposal from three education groups that represent public school boards and administrators across Oklahoma.

    July 24, 2014

  • Winners of Cudd Legacy award named

    Three veterans of the oil industry will receive this year's Bobby Joe Cudd Legacy Award during the Tri-State Oil and Gas Convention on Aug. 7 at the Woodward Conference Center.

    July 24, 2014

  • Benefit gun raffles underway

    Woodward Reserve police officers and other Woodward full time officers have come together to support one of their own.

    July 24, 2014

  • Tulsa man looking for military friend

    There are times in everyone's life when you think back and wonder whatever happened to those old friends from your past.

    July 23, 2014

  • Zoning change approved by commission

    Monday night Woodward city commissioners unanimously approved a zoning change that was contested by one local man who was protesting because he wants the neighborhood to continue its residential growth.

    July 23, 2014

  • Tangier Reunion set for Saturday, Sunday

    When Barbara (Allison) Merwin thinks back to the years she spent in the classrooms of Tangier High School, it takes a few moments for her to recall how school life was 60 years ago.

    July 23, 2014

  • Traveler Majors take regional opener

    ALVA - The Traveler Majors continued their strong Connie Mack playoff showing at Northwestern Oklahoma State University Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • County OKs road use agreement

    Woodward County Commissioners on Monday approved a final version of a road use agreement between a energy company planning a wind turbine construction project near southeast Woodward County.

    July 22, 2014

  • Camp to show art is everywhere

    The Woodward Arts Theatre will become a recycling plant next week.

    July 22, 2014

  • Fairview Wrangler Rodeo turns 50 this year

    Western fun continues in Northwest Oklahoma as the Fairview Wrangler’s hosting their 50th annual rodeo.

    July 22, 2014