If you vape, keep your kids safe

Photo (c) Martin-DM - Getty Images

Here are some tips on how to keep e-liquids away from children

If you want to vape, that's your business.

But exposing kids to nicotine-containing e-liquids -- the liquid used in “vape” products -- is another matter completely.

E-liquids, especially those containing even small amounts of nicotine, can be dangerous to children -- causing injury and even death -- if they touch or drink it.

Figures from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) show that from April 2022 to March 2023, 7,043 e-cigarette or e-liquid exposure cases were reported, with approximately 88% of exposures occurring among children under five years old.

Why they are dangerous

Harmful effects from drinking e-liquids can include seizure, coma, respiratory arrest and death.

Accidental exposure to e-liquids and their contents -- including nicotine – can occur through contact in the mouth, on the skin, or by inhaling the e-liquid aerosol.

Moreover, containers for storing e-liquids can seem tempting to children of all ages for many reasons. But these products are not meant for children, teens, or young adults.

Safe Storage of e-liquids

As any parent knows, small kids are curious and put all sorts of things in their mouths. If you turn away even for a few seconds, they can get into things quickly that could harm them.

Here are a few tips from the FDA for storing these products:

  • Always put your e-cigarettes and/or e-liquids in a safe and elevated location, in the original containers -- and out of the reach and view of children and pets -- every time you use them.
  • Ask family members, house guests, and other visitors who vape to store their bags or coats that hold e-cigarettes or e-liquids in a safe and elevated location, out of the reach and view of children and pets.
  • Explain to children old enough to understand that these products can be dangerous and should not be touched. Tell them that you or another adult are the only people who should handle these products.
  • Know the poison control phone number. To be prepared in case of an emergency, also add the Poison Control HELP number (800-222-1222) to your phone contacts.
  • When you remove products (adult-only) from their storage locations, handle them in a way that may help to prevent kids’ exposure to e-liquids.
  • Store e-liquids in their original containers and lock product caps when you’re not using them. If a bottle has a cap that turns, twist it until you cannot twist it anymore.
  • Clean up any spills or splashes immediately using soap and water.

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