Why are so many kids ingesting hand sanitizer?
As the number of children ingesting hand sanitizer climbs, investigators are looking into possible reasons why. Among younger children, who account for 91 percent of incidents, researchers site the appealing scent of hand sanitizers as a source of confusion. However, among older children, signs point to deliberate ingestion as children seek out hand sanitizers for the high alcohol content. Regardless of the reason for ingestion, the consequences can range from breathing difficulties, vomiting and eye irritation and can also include much more serious problems such as seizures and even coma.
According to the CDC, another cause for the rise in ingestion cases is the sheer availability of the substance in schools – where in recent years, hand sanitizer dispensers have been more uniformly installed. To avoid future risk, experts suggest supervised use and storage of the substance when not in use.