Site Map

Medicine safety and children

Medication safety; Poison control - medicine safety

Every year, many children are brought to the emergency room because they took medicine by accident. A lot of medicine is made to look and taste like candy. Children are curious and attracted to medicine.

Most children find the medicine when their parent or caregiver is not looking. You can prevent accidents by keeping medicine locked up, out of reach, and out of sight. Be very careful if you have toddlers around.

Keep Medicines out of Reach and Sight

Safety tips:

What to do if Your Child Takes Medicine

If you think your child has taken medicine, call the poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. It is open 24 hours a day.

Go to the nearest emergency room. Your child may need:

Preventing Medicine Mistakes

When giving medicine to your young child, follow these safety tips:

When to Call the Doctor

Call the doctor if:


American Academy of Pediatrics, Healthy website. Medication safety tips. Updated September 15, 2015. Accessed February 9, 2021.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Put your medicines up and away and out of sight. Updated June 10, 2020. Accessed February 9, 2021.

US Food & Drug Administration website. Where and how to dispose of unused medicines. Updated October 9, 2020. Accessed February 9, 2021.


Review Date: 10/2/2020  

Reviewed By: Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

ADAM Quality Logo
Health Content Provider

A.D.A.M., Inc. is accredited by URAC, for Health Content Provider ( URAC's accreditation program is an independent audit to verify that A.D.A.M. follows rigorous standards of quality and accountability. A.D.A.M. is among the first to achieve this important distinction for online health information and services. Learn more about A.D.A.M.'s editorial policy, editorial process and privacy policy. A.D.A.M. is also a founding member of Hi-Ethics. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information: verify here.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2022 A.D.A.M., a business unit of Ebix, Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

A.D.A.M. content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Firefox and Google Chrome browser.