Do NOT make a person throw up unless told to do so by poison control or a health care professional. Seek immediate medical help.
If the chemical is on the skin or in the eyes, flush with lots of water for at least 15 minutes.
If the chemical was swallowed, immediately give the person water or milk, unless instructed otherwise by a health care provider. Do NOT give water or milk if the patient is having symptoms (such as vomiting, convulsions, or a decreased level of alertness) that make it hard to swallow.
If the person breathed in the poison, immediately move him or her to fresh air.
Determine the following information:
The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.
This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Take the container with you to the hospital, if possible.
The health care provider will measure and monitor the patient's vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated as appropriate. The patient may receive:
Severe asphyxiation can be rapidly life-threatening. For simple exposure or inhalation of small amounts, recovery should occur.
When used as directed in low doses, DEET is relatively not harmful. It is the preferred bug repellant for the prevention of mosquito-borne illnesses such as Dengue fever, malaria, and West Nile virus. The low toxicity of DEET compared to the danger of any of those diseases makes applying DEET to repel bugs a sensible choice, even in pregnant women.
Large, intentional overdoses of DEET by swallowing bug spray can be quite serious. How well a patient does depends on the amount and concentration of DEET swallowed and how quickly medical treatment is received. Seizures can lead to permanent brain damage and possibly death.
Borron SW. Pyrethrins, repellants, and other pesticides. In: Shannon MW, Borron SW, Burns MJ, eds. Haddad and Winchester's Clinical Management of Poisoning and Drug Overdose. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 77.
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