Childhood Poisoning Report Shows Increases in Exposures of Addictive Substances to Children

The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) recently published a report on childhood poisoning and prevention efforts. The report finds that in 2016 alone, over 30,500 reports were made to poison control centers regarding the exposure of addictive substances to young children. Exposure rates of nicotine, alcohol, cannabis, and opioids among children have increased over the past decade and many of these children experience serious consequences from these events. Notable findings include:

  • Exposures to cannabis increased by 148 percent over a seven-year period
  • Exposures to prescription opioids increased 93 percent each year over a nine-year period
  • Poison control center reports regarding e-cigarettes increased more than 1,400 percent over a three-year period
  • The number of young children exposed to alcohol has increased every year since 2012

The report details a set of recommendations and conclusions for public health practitioners, health care providers, parents and caregivers, policymakers, and researchers to ensure children are protected from toxic substance exposure, substance use, and addiction. The full report is available here.