The autumn and holiday season is often accompanied by an assortment of food and drinks, including a variety of festive alcoholic beverages. Alcoholic drinks may have pretty colors or be mixed with ice cream, making these beverages more appealing to children. Regardless of how “child-like” these beverages may look, kids are at high risk for alcohol poisoning due to their reduced size and weight. Kids frequently imitate adults, and a few curious swigs of an unattended alcoholic beverage can often go unnoticed, especially if the adults present are inebriated. Kids’ systems cannot metabolize alcohol, so even a little bit can be very harmful. Children with alcohol poisoning can experience low blood sugar, low body temperature, and central nervous system depression.1 Adults can significantly mitigate risk to kids by cleaning up all alcoholic drinks and containers immediately following family gatherings or parties. The poison center also recommends that families keep an accessible list of all the crucial emergency telephone numbers. (e.g., Georgia Poison Center, your child’s pediatrician, Atlanta Police Department, Atlanta Fire Department, etc.). During this holiday season, eat, drink, and be cautious.
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