In North Jersey over just a four-week period, two kids in separate cases were hospitalized after ingesting an industrial cleaning product that was brought into the home by a family member.

Cleaning sink
AGorohov, ThinkStock

Both children are expected to make a full recovery, but poison experts are urging parents to be more cautious about the products they bring indoors.

In each case, a commercial stove cleaner/degreaser was taken home by a family member who works in a restaurant, according to the New Jersey Poison Information and Education System. The product was transferred into a typical container, such as a water bottle, making it even more appealing to young eyes.

"Whenever we hear about a child who drinks or ingests an industrial strength cleaner, we get much more worried because we know it can have a very devastating effect," said NJPIES Medical Director Dr. Diane Calello.

Cleaning products are the most common reason they receive poison hotline calls related to wrongful ingestion among young children, according to Calello, who notes industrial products contain strong chemicals that are not allowed for household use and can cause permanent burns of the esophagus and stomach.

In each New Jersey case over the past month, she said, the child took a sip of the dangerous liquid and immediately started to cry. When the parents saw their child holding the bottle of industrial cleaner, they contacted a medical professional.

"Those kids got lucky and the families got lucky, but it won't always happen that way," Calello said. "Industrial products are meant for industrial use, period, and don't put anything in a beverage bottle that is not a beverage."

Cleaning products should be locked up out of the sight of children, she advised.

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