Parents have been cautioned against giving their children palm oil to induce vomiting after swallowing chemical substances.
Dr Audry Frimpong-Barfi, Head of Pediatric Unit at the Tema General Hospital who gave the caution said the practice could endanger the lives of children.
The Tema General Hospital which is a referral institution for health facilities in Tema and its environs receives an average of three children either swallowing or drinking chemicals including kerosene, diesel, pesticides, and DDT among others.
Dr Frimpong-Barfi, gave the caution in an interview with the Ghana News Agency at Tema on the sidelines of a food demonstration programme at the Tema Community seven satellite market organized in commemoration of the 2021 Child Health Promotion Week.
She explained that, “palm oil is to induce vomiting, but while they are vomiting, some of the secretion can get into the lungs making the chemicals or poison to enter in there”.
She added that when it happened so, it could cause chemical pneumonitis in the children, a situation which could resort into respiratory failure and death.
The Pediatric Unit Head encouraged parents to keep such chemicals away from the reach of children to prevent such occurrences, while advising them to follow acceptable practices should it happen.
“When a child swallows a chemical, remove his or her clothing, wash the mouth with clean water, wash the whole body and immediately go to the hospital”, she said stressing that, “don’t give the child palm oil”.