The 9 things in your home you had no idea could be poisoning your baby

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Having a baby is an exciting time but it takes a lot of preparation to make sure your home is child-proof.

Your home can be a dangerous place for a child so it’s important to remove and replace anything that could be toxic to them.

Whether it’s your appliances or the food you have in the fridge there are plenty of potential hazards that may harm your baby.

The UK’s National Health Service (NHS) says that most cases of poisoning happen in the home and that children under the age of five have the highest risk of accidental poisoning.

Poisons can be swallowed, injected, absorbed through the skin, inhaled or splashed into the eyes.

Most cases of poisoning in the UK come from an overdose of medications, this can include both over-the-counter medications such as paracetamol and prescriptions medications such as antidepressants.

In order to reduce your child’s risk of poisoning, there are a number of things you can do to keep them safe.

Making sure you read the information on medication and storing away any poisonous products is key – but what are the products that could bring harm to your little one?

1. Cleaning products

Cleaning supplies are potentially harmful to babies, experts say.
Cleaning supplies are potentially harmful to babies, experts say.
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While it’s important to keep a clean home to avoid nasty bugs and germs spreading, the NHS says that cleaning products such as bleach could contain poisons that could be harmful.

It’s important to keep these products out of reach so that your child can’t ingest them.

Instead of using harsh chemicals found in household cleaners, you could opt for lemon juice, which is naturally antibacterial, antiseptic and smells fresh.

2. Cosmetics

Woman paints her fingernails.
Products such as nail polish can be an irritant to the stomach or intestines.
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The NHS says that other poisonous items could include cosmetics such as nail varnish.

Products such as nail varnish can be an irritant to the stomach or intestines.

3. Plants

Indoor houseplants next to a window in a beautifully designed home or flat interior
Certain plants and fungi can be harmful to babies.
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While many of us worry about pollution outside of our homes, it’s important we aren’t polluting them inside.

The NHS says that certain plants and fungi can be dangerous.

Instead you should opt for bamboo and spider plants, which according to a study conducted by NASA are the best plants at removing indoor toxins.

4. Poorly cooked or moldy food

You may not even realize some of your food has started growing mold.
You may not even realize some of your food has started growing mold.
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The NHS says that poorly prepared or cooked food, and food that’s gone moldy or been contaminated with bacteria from raw meat could be poisonous.

It’s important to keep this food out of the reach of your child.

5. Medicines

Medicines can often be poisonous to babies.
Medicines can often be poisonous to babies.
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If anyone takes too much of a medicine it can be dangerous but even more so to children.

The NHS states that medicines prescribed for pets, recreational drugs or substances can be poisonous.

6. Alcohol

Booze can be especially dangerous to both children and adults.
Booze can be especially dangerous to both children and adults.
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It’s important to keep all booze away from kids – especially the brightly-colored stuff as they might mistake this for juice.

Booze can be especially dangerous to children and the NHS says that even if adults consume an excessive amount over a short period of time it could cause alcohol poisoning.

7. Plastic bottles

Plastic bottles can leave harmful chemicals like BPA into milk.
Plastic bottles can leak harmful chemicals like BPA into milk.
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Doctor of psychology, Natasha Beck who runs Dr Organic Mommy said that it’s important to have glass bottles rather than plastic when it comes to storing baby formula or breast milk.

She told Insider: “Plastic bottles can leach toxic chemicals like BPA into the milk, especially if you put them in the microwave or dishwasher.”

But don’t worry if you’re already done this, as Beck said that over time the body gets rid of most toxins.

8. Stress

Tired mother holding her newborn child at home.
Sress can negatively impact everyone in a family.
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Trying to work out what’s safe can be anxiety inducing and Beck said sometimes the worst chemicals are the ones we can’t see.

“Social toxins can be worse than chemical ones. Worrying and being overwhelmed by all of the information out there — you don’t want that to take over.

“When you know better, you do better. Tackle one thing at a time. Because there’s a lot of different things you can always start to change.”

9. Water

Bad water quality could mean your baby ingests too many toxins.
Bad water quality could mean your baby ingests too many toxins.
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In recent years many people have started to use water filters in order to get rid of any potential nasties in their drinks.

Many water pipes can contain mercury, chlorine and asbestos which can often become displaced from old and aging water pipes.

Beck said: “You should also get a filter to remove toxins from your water at home, Beck said. Not all water filters remove lead and PFAS (Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances), or “forever chemicals,” so make sure to pick a good one.”

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