Friday, October 24, 2014
Risks of Mushroom Poisoning in Children
Identifying Poisonous Mushrooms
There are multiple identifying marks on mushrooms that can be used to determine whether or not they are poisonous. Mushrooms that grown on the ground are usually more dangerous than mushrooms found on trees. The mushrooms that grow on forest floors are normally more dangerous than those that grow in lawns.
One way to determine if a mushroom is poisonous or not is to look at the cap, or top of the mushroom. If it has wart-like bumps on the top, it is probably poisonous. Underneath the cap, there are usually white or tan gills. They appear to be thin plates underneath the cap.
The stem of a mushroom has identifying features also that may help determine whether or not a mushroom is poisonous. The top of the stem usually has a ring around it. The same goes for the bottom of the stem. The base of the mushroom is normally shaped like a bulb. Identifying these traits will help you determine if your child has come in contact with a poisonous mushroom.
Symptoms of Mushroom Poisoning
The symptoms of mushroom poisoning are very similar to the symptoms of food poisoning or the stomach flu. The symptoms can begin shortly after the mushroom is eaten or several hours afterwards. Poisonous mushrooms produce an overall sick feeling. It often causes stomach cramps, nausea, and vomiting. A child who has eaten one of these mushrooms can have bloody or watery diarrhea.
Treatment for Mushroom Poisoning
If you suspect your child has eaten a poisonous mushroom, medical attention should be sought. Poison control (1-800-222-1222) can give you 24 hour information on what to do in a case of mushroom poisoning. If your child stops breathing, falls unconscious, or begins convulsing, 911 should be called immediately.
If you decide to take your child to the doctor or emergency room, it's important to bring a sample of the mushrooms with you to be tested. Vomiting is usually the worse symptom of the poisoning. If your child has not already thrown up, the doctor may decide to give them activated charcoal. Your child's heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature will be monitored. In most cases, you just have to wait for the mushroom poisoning to pass naturally.