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Health Services > Queensland Poisons Information Centre


What is a poison?

Even the mildest chemicals, medicines, animals and plants can be dangerous to small or sensitive people or can become poisonous if you are exposed to enough of them.

Children under five years old are at the greatest risk of poisoning, and poisoning is one of the top three reasons why children in this age group are seen at hospital emergency departments or are admitted to hospital. Medications are the most common cause of childhood poisonings and nearly all childhood poisonings take place at home. So preventing poisonings at home is a very important way of avoiding injury in children.

Be aware that many poisonings occur when poisons are outside their normal secure storage area, e.g. just after purchase, when being used, when moving house or when visiting other people's homes.

Common poisons

Common poisons that can be dangerous to children and adults include:

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Last Updated: 01 October 2013
Last Reviewed: 01 October 2013