Toxic Holiday Plants


Some of the most common holiday plants we use to decorate our homes during the holidays may contain hidden dangers for our children and pets. A common misconception is that  Poinsettias plants are extremely poisonous and life threatening. Though eating several leaves may cause a mild stomach upset, they are generally considered by the Poison Control Center as a safe plant for your home.

Here’s a list of potentially dangerous plants:

Mistletoe – All parts of this plant are toxic and can cause vomiting and diarrhea. If you hang this plant in your home, place it into a plastic bag first so that the leaves or berries do not fall to the floor where our kids and pets have access to them.

Christmas Trees (Cedar) – The bark on a cedar tree, if eaten can cause a stomachache. Also pine needles can stick in a child’s throat if swallowed and can cause choking.

Holly Berries – Children who swallow more than 1 or 2 berries will experience nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Jerusalem Cherry – This plant has bright red and orange berries. If swallowed it can cause hallucinations, drowsiness and vomiting.

Rosary Pea (Jequirity Bean) – The jequirity bean is commonly used in Mexican jewelry. In India and Africa it is used as a poison for animals and humans. This small bean if swallowed whole does not pose any harm, but if chewed before swallowing it can be life threatening. Vomiting and bloody diarrhea will occur within a few hours.

If you believe a child or animal has been poisoned and they are still conscious, call the “Poison Control Center” immediately at 1-800-222-1222, for information in the treatment of that specific poisoning.  If at any time the individual becomes unconscious call 9-1-1, for immediate medical assistance.

In any case never induce vomiting unless instructed by the poison control center.

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