Poisoning emergencies - children

The kind of action that is needed when a child swallows something poisonous varies from the reaction the child gives. If the child is unconscious, call 113 or assistance.

Children are often fast with putting things in their mouth.
Foto: Johnér Bildbyrå AB

​In emergencies you should

  • ​Call The Poison Information: 22 59 13 00 or seek medical help.

  • Keep packaging or remains of the substance that has caused the problem, so that you may give accurate information when you call.

  • The Poison Information will be able to give you advice on what to do, but remember:

In cases of unconsciousness:

  • Call 113

  • Make sure the child can and does breathe freely. 113 will guide you in life saving when necessary.

Swallowed poison

  • ​Give something to drink, but avoid using force

  • Quick administration of activated charcoal may prevent and stop serious reactions in case of poisoning

  • Contact The Poison Information or a GP before administering activated charcoal to a child

  • Vomiting should in general not be induced at home, and never in cases of convulsions or when the child has swallowed petroleum products or products that cause chemical burns

  • When a child has swallowed products that cause chemical burns, immediately rinse their mouth and give 1 to 2 glasses to drink

Activated charcoal may be bought at any pharmacy, without a prescription. Parents of small children, kindergartens and schools are recommended to keep activated charcoal at hand, in case of poisoning.

Poison in the eyes

  • ​Immediately flood eyes with running water, preferably lukewarm water without too much pressure

  • If the product that has reached the eyes may cause chemical burns, continue flooding on the way to hospital / GP’s office

  • Recommended time you should flood the eyes, varies. Contact The Poison Information for advice

Poison on the skin

  • ​Immediately flood the skin with running water

  • Remove clothes, jewelry and other items close to the skin that may have been contaminated

  • In case of contact with products that cause severe chemical burns, keep flooding the skin on the way to hospital / GP’s office

  • If the contaminated area is large, place the child in the bathtub or the shower, and flood the skin with lukewarm water

  • Recommended time for flooding skin when contaminated by poisonous products varies from minutes to hours. Contact The Poison Information for advice


  • ​If the child inhales vapor from chemicals, gas or smoke, provide fresh air and keep the child warm and quiet

  • Contact The Poison Information for advice