What To Do In a Poisoning Situation



Poisoning has always been a popular method of eliminating anyone from a troublesome acquaintance to a political opponent. If one day you witness a poisoning or you are prey to such a baffling event, here are a few tips that I have gathered through my research in order to face it.

What is poisoning?

poison, Poison bottles with Poison symbol a

Poisoning is the act of committing suicide or of attempting on one’s life by the use or giving of substances (poison) of such a nature as to cause death (immediate or delayed). In other terms, poisoning is the result of a voluntary act.

The poisoning can be done:

– By ingestion of a food (mushrooms) or a drink;

– By the absorption of a gas or a toxic emanation;

– By direct physical contact with the skin or mucous tissue.

The most common symptoms

The symptoms differ according to the nature of the poisoning:

– Nausea, vomiting;

– Abdominal pain;

– Fever if ingested;

– Disorders of consciousness;

– Discomfort and headaches if inhaled, etc.

What should you do in case of poisoning?

– Do not give the victim anything to drink (especially children);

– Alert the emergency services 

– In case of suspected ingestion of a toxic product, call the nearest poison control center;

– In case of contact to skin and/or mucous membranes, wash with water (same for eyes) and avoid touching the wounds;

– In case of gas poisoning, check breathing functions and remove the victim from the premises;

– If bitten, cover the wound with a clean cloth, lay the victim down, ask him/her not to move, and alert the emergency services;

– If only one limb of the victim is affected, be sure to keep it below the level of the heart;

– Remove infected clothes;

– Apply this procedure (comfortable position, assure the oxygen, reassure the victim, check vital signs and warmth, lift up the legs, eliminate cause).  

Preventive measures

– Keep medicines in the appropriate storage space with safety devices. Watch out for containers that do not have these devices.

– Keep all handbags away from children, including those of guests.

– Place household products in safe deposit boxes, preferably out of reach of children.

– Watch out for brightly coloured household products that are very attractive to children (e.g., dishwasher caps).

– Store household products in their dedicated cabinet immediately after use (even if they are used very regularly).

– Supervise the use of antiseptic hand sanitizers. Bottles should also be stored away from children, especially toddlers. If school-aged children are taught proper use, they should be able to use them properly. However, special attention should be paid to younger siblings.

– Save the number of the Poison Control Centre on your cell phone or put it in a visible place in the house, such as the fridge.


Most of the time people get confused about the difference between intoxication and poisoning.

What is intoxication?

Unlike poisoning, which is voluntary. The intoxication is accidental, leading to the onset of physical disorders, following the absorption of substances that are harmful to the body:

– Ingestion of a food (mushrooms) or a drink, hence the term food intoxication ;

– Following the absorption of a gas, of a toxic emanation;

– By direct contact with the skin, mucous membranes;

– By animal bite or insect sting.

The symptoms, the post-intoxication abilities and the treatment and prevention methods do not differ from those of a poisoning mentioned above.

Three of the most unsuspected natural poisons

The Swiss physician and alchemist Paracelsus said: “All substances are poisons; there is no substance that is not a poison. The right dose differentiates a poison”, and he is right. Even too much water will kill you. However, there are certain things that require such a small amount to cause death, sometimes just a drop falling on a fully gloved hand. They are:

1-Botulinum toxin

Botulinum toxin is the world’s most deadly natural poison. It is produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, which thrives in low-oxygen environments, especially in food cans. The bacterial substance causes what is known as botulism, and acts by blocking the neurotransmitters that control muscle contraction, causing paralysis.

2- Cyanide

Cyanides are among the fastest poisons in the world. They can be produced by bacteria, algae but also plants. They are present in manioc, in the pits of certain fruits, in apple seeds and almonds, and in cherries. It interferes with the use of oxygen, creating respiratory problems.

3- Amatoxins

These toxic compounds are present in several species of poisonous mushrooms (poisonous, venomous, what’s the difference?) among which the Amanita phalloides and the Amanite vireuse. Targeting and destroying liver and kidney cells. However, what makes them so dangerous is that the symptoms only appear between 6 and 24 hours after ingestion.


The risk of poisoning is higher in young children under the age of six, but keep in mind that it can happen at any age. Be vigilant and in the event of poisoning simply follow all of the above steps.


2 thoughts on “What To Do In a Poisoning Situation”

  1. Merci pour votre travail abattu.
    Mais j’aimerais vous suggéré une idée celle de prendre en compte l’Afrique car j’ai l’impression que vous vous êtes focaliser sur les pratiques occidentale.
    Il n’y a pas eu assez de recherche par rapport au thème abordé.
    Ce thème un thème qui fait vraiment des ravages en ces temps ci . empoisonné ses proches.
    Le monde va à la dérive avec cette situation .Alors appliquez vous à nous tenir bien informer afin d’y remédier à ce fléau dramatique.

    • Bonjour très chère Diane,

      Merci pour la considération que vous avez accordé à notre écrit. Nous prenons en compte vos remarques qui sont d’ailleurs constructives et les appliquerons lors d’une mise à jour ultérieure.

      Encore merci et bonne journée


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