Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

How Using Pesticides in Landscaping Works


Treating Pesticide Poisoning

Pesticide poisoning is scary. First and foremost, if this is an emergency and you believe you or someone around you may have pesticide poisoning, call 911 or contact Poison Control at 1-800-222-1222.

To protect those around you, have­ a first aid kit at the ready that includes eye wash, clean water, syrup of ipecac, activated charcoal powder, soap, disposable towels and clean clothing [source: Andre]. Also, make sure you have a phone list prepared and easily accessible with the phone numbers of your local poison control and emergency health center.

If pesticides have been swallowed, check this list to see if action is appropriate and contact poison control:

  • Wash the victim's mouth with lots of water. The pesticide label should tell you whether or not the victim should actually drink water to dilute the chemicals. This is not always the appropriate route though, so read the label carefully.
  • Read the label or contact a professional to find out if vomiting should be induced. You can induce by using a dose of syrup of ipecac or by sticking your finger into the victim's mouth until you touch the back of his or her throat. Never induce vomiting on a victim who is lying down or unconscious as this may cause choking.

If any animals have been exposed to pesticides, you should take them to see a veterinarian as soon as possible. If they have already started to show signs of poisoning, which include unconsciousness, bleeding, trouble breathing or seizures, contact an emergency pet clinic immediately. The ASPCA offers an animal poison consultation at 1-800-246-4435 [source: NPIC].

For additional information, check out the links on the following page.

­