What to do if a child ingests something poisonous

Dear Readers: As parents and grandkids know, toddlers like to put objects in their mouths. What if your child has ingested something? What resources do we have to educate ourselves about POISONS?

Very important: If the child is unresponsive or in respiratory distress, call 911 immediately.

If the victim is awake and alert, with no breathing trouble, you can call the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC). The number is 800-222-1222.

You will be routed to a live operator in your state, 24 hours a day. These folks are pharmacists and nurses, and they will give you guidance.

Our homes can be filled with many dangerous products that tempt youngsters, such as colorful laundry packs, medications and chemical cleaners.

It’s our job to keep kids safe. Check out the AAPCC website, www.PoisonHelp.org, for more information, or text “POISON” to 797979 for a link on your phone. — Heloise


Dear Heloise: Please tell your readers that if they borrow anything (furniture, china, tools, sports equipment, clothes, jewelry, books, etc.) and they damage it, they owe at least the replacement cost of the damaged item.

Moral of this story: Do not borrow unless you know you can pay the replacement cost. — Virginia C. in Houston


Dear Heloise: Can you settle an argument? What’s the difference between an antique and a collectible? — Harriet B. in Ohio

Harriet, this is an interesting topic! An antique is an object that is desirable because of its age and importance. An antique is defined as being at least 100 years old, rare and in great condition.

A collectible also is valuable, but it’s typically a trendy item, something less than 100 years old, relatable to popular culture perhaps, and may go up or down in its worth. It usually is not as valuable as an antique may be. — Heloise

P.S. The term “vintage” is used for something that’s “in” again after a short period — 25 years!


Dear Heloise: Merchants, hoteliers, restaurateurs and others may offer discounts, but they may not be advertised! For example, if you are a college or high school student, current or retired military, or a senior citizen, ask for a discount! — William H. in Los Angeles


Dear Heloise: I was excited to retire and have some downtime, but my “honey-do” list is way overdue! Instead of spending eight hours at the office, I’m working 16 hours at home! — Charles D., Decatur, Ill.

Relax a little bit, Charles; you’ve earned it! All that work will wait for you! — Heloise


Hints from Heloise run occasionally in Lifestyles. Readers may send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE, or email: Heloise@Heloise.com. Letters won’t be answered personally.


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