Organic pesticides are the safest way to protect your home from pests. However, as with all pest control equipment and organic pesticides, there is the potential for unsafe exposure, especially if you have small children in your home. This doesn’t mean you should let pests take over your household — organic pesticides are safe to use as long as you are careful and informed. Each year children are unnecessarily harmed by preventable circumstances. With that in mind, here are a few simple tips to ensure the safety of your kids while using organic pesticides and check out green solutions for pest in your home.
1. Use high-quality organic pesticides
There are many strong and dangerous pesticides that can be harmful to even adults. Ensure the products are well-tested and safe, in addition to being effective. Avoid using cheap, highly toxic, or illegal sprays. Make sure all the equipment you are using if functioning well and properly serviced. The best way to ensure the safety of your kids is to buy quality organic pesticides and appropriate pest control equipment.
2. Safe storage
When not in use, your organic pesticides should be stored out-of-reach, in a closed cabinet, preferably with locks. Keep any pest control product in its original packaging with a tight or child-proof seal. As an adult, you can easily overlook ways that your child could open a drawer or cupboard. So, it’s always a good idea to observe your home from your kid’s perspective to make sure you don’t miss any potentially unsafe cupboards.
3. Proper application
Read the label and instructions of the product you are using thoroughly. If you follow the company recommendations closely, you can avoid accidental poisoning or over-application. After spraying, make sure you leave ample time for the pesticide to dry and the space to adequately ventilate.
The most common time for a child to be accidentally exposed to unsafe chemicals is during use. If you have to pause while applying any pesticides, ensure the product is properly sealed and out of reach. If the pesticide is used on a pet, keep your pet away from your kids until the instructions say it is safe.
4. Safety plan
Even with diligent planning and precautions, accidents can happen. Children love to crawl around and put their hands in their mouths, which puts them at a greater risk for poisoning. They may even encounter harmful pesticides at school, at a friend’s house, or at daycare. Teach your children that these products are off limits. Inform all babysitters or caregivers where the pesticides are stored and what to do in case something happens.
It is always a good idea to keep the phone number for your local poison control on the fridge or with other emergency numbers.
Familiarize yourself with the following signs of poisoning:
– Flu-like symptoms
– Muscle twitching
If you notice any of these symptoms after your child has come into contact with pesticides, immediately call the Poison Control Center’s national hotline: 1-800-222-1222. For more information on how to safely use organic pesticides in your home, visit the National Pesticide Information Center or The Environmental Protection Agency.
With these few simple tips you can keep your family safe and home pest free!
Author Bio: Scott Walston is a professional organic pesticides safety inspector and writer. He is passionate about organic pest control, product safety and management, and gardening.