Friday, January 24, 2014

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning: Know The Signs

image courtesy of digitalart/

Everyone knows that carbon monoxide is dangerous; that's why we have CO detectors in our homes.  But what about away from home?  How can you help keep your family safe in an environment whose monitoring is beyond your control?  I'll be honest, it was a question I had never considered myself, until I read this eye-opening article.

The truth is, there are a few things you can do as a guest in a commercial property!  For little to no money, you can either pack your own portable CO detector, or establish prior to booking that your room has a one installed. In addition, familiarize yourself  with the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning; recognizing the symptoms early could help save your life and the lives of your children. 

Know the Signs:

Early symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
As carbon monoxide builds up in your blood, symptoms get worse and may also include:
  • Confusion and drowsiness
  • Fast breathing, fast heartbeat, or chest pain
  • Vision problems
  • Seizures
But carbon monoxide poisoning doesn't always occur very suddenly (as in the above article); it can also build up in your system over a long period of time. So it is vital to recognize the more subtle symptoms of CO poisoning and to know what to do if you think you've been exposed.  You should immediately see a doctor if you notice:
  • You often are short of breath and have mild nausea and headaches when you are indoors.
  • You feel better when you leave the building and worse when you return.
  • Other people you work or live with have the same symptoms you do.

Get Help and Speak Up:

If you or your family members have symptoms that you believe are being caused by carbon monoxide poisoning, leave the area immediately, alert the property owner, and call 911 or go to the emergency room.  Continued exposure could result in unconsciousness and death, as was sadly the case in the above-mentioned article.

As parents, the safety of our family is paramount, whether home or away. By being prepared and informed we can help prevent tragedies like what happened to Jeffrey Williams and his mother.  So know the signs and speak up if you suspect a problem... it might just save a life.

Safe and happy travels.
-Destination Mom

No comments:

Post a Comment