Staying Safe In The Home

Medicines & Tablet Safety

It is very important to keep any medicines or tablets in your house out of the reach of children. You can prevent accidents and overdoses by keeping medicine in a safe place, where children cannot see or reach them.

It is also important to keep any medicines or tablets out of the reach of older children and teenagers as they may use them for recreational party drugs. Talk to your older children and teenagers about the dangers of drugs and medicines in the home - they may not realise they could be harmful - and how to say "No" when others try to encourage their use.

Dive Deeper

Safety Checklist

Keeping medicines and tablets in a safe, secure place is very important. Follow the checklist below to make sure the medicines and tablets in your house are safe.

  • Medicine should be stored out of sight and locked away from where children, teenagers or other people who may take them, can see them or reach them.
  • A high shelf is not enough as even small children can climb.
  • Make sure only you or other appropriate adults have access to the key(s).
  • Keep medicine in its original child-proof packaging.
  • Do not take your medicines or tablets in front of children.
  • Use reminder tools to help you remember when to take and give medicines and tablets, such as an alarm or planner.
  • Take unwanted medicines and tablets to the pharmacy for disposal.
  • Store and dispose of all injecting equipment and empty containers safely.

What To Do If Your Child Has Taken Your Medication

If you think your child has taken an overdose act fast. Call 999 for an ambulance or go to your nearest A&E department.

Take the medication container (and any remaining contents) with you, so the doctor knows what the child or person has taken.

Do not try and make them sick – this may make things worse and if the person is unconscious, lie them on their side to make their breathing easier and to help stop them inhaling vomit if they are sick.

Talking To Your Child About Medicines, Tablets And Drugs

Many children who have abused prescription drugs have never been educated about the dangers of them by their parents or carers. Having a simple conversation about the effects of abusing prescription drugs with your children is one of the best preventative measures you can take. Other things to do include:

  • Set a positive example. Take your medications only as prescribed to set a good example.
  • Stay involved. Have daily conversations with your children about their school day and their friends, especially during the ‘trying’ teenage years. Help your children think of things they can say if a friend ever tries to entice them with using prescription drugs.

Safely Dispose Of Old Medicines Or Tablets

Safely discard of all unused medications. Read the medicine label for safe ways to get rid of old or extra medicine and read the guide below.

Expiry Dates and Disposal of Medicine

Who Can Help?

If you think your child has taken an overdose act fastCall 999 for an ambulance or go to your nearest A&E department.

If you cannot make voice calls, you can now contact the 999 emergency services by SMS text from your mobile phone. Emergency SMS is part of the standard 999 service which has been designed specifically for people with hearing loss or difficulty with speech.

You can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

You can speak to other Norfolk parents and carers by clicking our online community forum below. 

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