Top of the page
Your child swallowed something that is not a poison, or toxin. In most cases this will not cause problems.
Your child's body will pass what your child ate or drank. You can help by offering your child plenty of fluids and foods with fibre.
Liquid charcoal may be given to a child who has swallowed a non-toxic substance. If your child was treated with liquid charcoal, expect your child's stools to be black for a couple of days. The doctor may give you instructions for how to treat other side effects of charcoal, such as nausea and constipation.
Most households contain many items that can be a hazard if swallowed. This is a good time to check your home to make sure that all alcohol, medicine, and household products are kept out of sight.
The doctor has checked your child carefully. But problems can develop later. If you notice any problems or new symptoms, get medical treatment right away.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if:
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
Enter M848 in the search box to learn more about "Non-Toxic Ingestion in Children: Care Instructions".
Adaptation Date: 2/25/2022
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 2006-2022 Healthwise, Incorporated. All rights reserved. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.