Current Top 10

 
The Specialists in Poison Information document every call received by the Ontario Poison Centre. This data:
  • Provides valuable information that can guide future treatment recommendations.
  • Allows the Ontario Poison Centre to identify emerging trends around substances causing harm.
  • Prevents unnecessary poisonous exposures and potential deaths.
The Manitoba Poison Centre regularly determines "Top 10" lists, identifying the top ten most common types of exposures managed by the Specialists in Poison Information. Over time, these lists have changed, reflecting regulatory changes and other trends happening in Manitoba. For instance, pain-relievers containing aspirin used to be one of the most common exposures until child-resistant packaging was introduced in the 1970s. Now, because of safer packaging and the availability of aspirin-free alternative pain relievers on the market, aspirin exposures rarely occur.
Top 10 - All Ages

1. Pain Relievers - Medicines that are given to relieve pain are the most common exposure that the Ontario Poison Centre deals with. These pain relievers are most commonly made of acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

2. Household Cleaners - Bleach, all-purpose cleaners, detergents and disinfectants are easily accessed and often not stored safely.

3. Sleeping Medicines - Many people take a pill to help them fall asleep. These medicines are commonly found in people's homes and are commonly involved in overdose situations.

4. Heart and Blood Pressure Medicines - Medicines that are taken for certain heart conditions and to lower your blood pressure can be very dangerous if the wrong person takes them by mistake.

5. Antidepressants - These medicines may be prescribed for depression, anxiety, and a variety of conditions. Rememberr to store them safely.

6. Personal Care Products - This includes products like mouthwash, toothpaste, sunscreen, perfumes, nail polish and nail polish removers.

7. Alcohols - These may include products such as regular drinking alcohol, rubbing alcohol, windshield washer fluid and antifreeze.

8. Hormones and Hormone Antagonists - These medicines include diabetes medicine, thryoid replacement therapy, and even birth control pills.

9. Antihistamine Medicines - These medicines are commonly found in pills that you would take for allergies or to help you sleep.

10. Anticonvulsants - These medicines are used to treat seizures. They can be dangerous is they get into the wrong hands.

Top 10 - Children Under Five

1. Household Cleaners - Bleach, all-purpose cleaners, detergents and disinfectants are easily accessible and often not stored safely.

2. Pain Relievers - These medicines include products that contain ibuprofen or acetaminophen. They are commonly found in people's homes and should be locked up with the rest of your family's medication.

3. Cosmetics and Personal Care Products - Young children often try to taste toothpaste, creams, perfumes and other personal care products. See our tips for poison prevention to learn about storing these products safely!

 4. Vitamins - Make sure to teach young children that vitamins are medicine. Keep them locked up with the rest of your family's medicine.

5. Foreign Bodies - These substances are not actually poisonous but are still choking hazards. Examples of Foreign Bodies include plastic toys, soil and coins.

6. Topical Preparations - Diaper creams, muscle rubs, wart removers. Just a few examples of substaqnces meant to be applied to the skin that children have gotten into!

7. Plants - Young children will often be tempted to bite into a leaf of a plant. Some are harmful and others are not. Know the names of all plants growing in and around your home. Visit the Plants section of our website to learn more.

8. Antimicrobials - Young children often get into their antibiotic medicine when parents aren’t looking. Keep this medicine locked up tight, along with the rest of your family’s medicines!

9. Hormones and Hormone Antagonists - Thyroid replacements, diabetes medicine and birth control pills. They may look like candy to young children. Keep them locked up.

10. Essential oils - These are extremely popular right now. Although people believe they are non-toxic, they are not. They can be dangerous if not used or stored properly.

Top 10 - 6 to 19 Year Olds

1. Pain Relievers - Over-the-counter pain medicines that contain acetaminophen or ibuprofen are easily accessible.

2. Antidepressants - This medicine might be prescribed for the child or they might belong to someone else in the home.

3. Sleeping medicines - Pre-teens and teens are at an age where they push limits and engage in risky behaviour. Talk to your child about medication abuse.

4. Heart and blood-pressure medicines - These medications can be extremely dangerous if taken by the wrong person.

5. Antibiotics - Errors can occur when giving or taking medicine, such as antibiotics. Visit our Poison Prevention page for tips on how to give medicine safely.

6. Simulants/Street Drugs - Adolescence is often a time for experimentation. Immature judgment puts this age group at risk for dangerous exposures.

7. Antihistamines - Medicines used to treat allergies are commonly found in a lot of homes which make them easily accessible to this age group.

8. Hormones and hormone replacements - Thyroid replacement and diabetes medicines are commonly found in a lot of homes.

9. Household cleaners - Many household cleaners are stored outside of their original containers. This can be dangerous for someone who does not know what is in the bottle! Remember to store products safely.

10. Alcohols - Have adolescents in the house? You may want to lock up the alcohol and start the conversation about risky behaviour with them.
 

Top 10 - Older Adults (age 60+)

  1. Heart and Blood Pressure Medicines - Many seniors take medicine to manage heart conditions or to lower their blood pressure. When ingested in greater quantities than prescribed, these medicines can be very dangerous.
  2. Pain Relievers - Medicines that are given to relieve pain are the most common exposure that the Manitoba Poison Centre deals with. These pain relievers are most commonly made of acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
  3. Sleeping Medicines - Many seniors take a pill to help them fall asleep. These medicines are commonly found in people's homes and are commonly involved in overdose situations
  4. Antidepressants – Many seniors take medication to help manage their depression. Taking too much can be dangerous.
  5. Hormones - Many seniors take medicine to help regulate their hormones. Mistakes in a medication regime can result in unintentional poisoning with these substances.
  6. Household Cleaners - Bleach, all-purpose cleaners, detergents and disinfectants are easily accessed and often not stored safely. Seniors with dementia are particularly at risk for unintentional poisoning with these substances as many products can be easily confused with beverages.
  7. Cosmetics and Personal Care Products - This category includes products like denture cleaners, mouthwash, hand sanitizers and more.
  8. Anti-seizure medicines - Medicines to control seizure activity can be very dangerous when taken incorrectly.
  9. Stomach Remedies - This includes products like laxatives, anti-diarrheal medicines, and antacids.
  10. Alcohols – This includes drinking alcohol, but also includes more dangerous products like windshield washer fluid, antifreeze, and rubbing alcohol.