Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is a serious life-threatening situation. You always want to make sure you protect yourself and your loved ones from being exposed to this deadly gas. CO is a side effect of burning fuel in heaters, fireplaces, grills, portable generators, space heaters, stoves, cars, small engines, and even lanterns. It is both an odorless and colorless gas, making it the primary reason why it’s important to install CO alarms in strategic places throughout your home. There are many ways carbon monoxide can cause harm in people. It’s also known as a “silent killer”.
Symptoms of CO poisoning
To understand what you need to do in the event of carbon monoxide poisoning, it’s important to recognize the symptoms. Everyone is at risk of being poisoned by this lethal gas. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms of CO poisoning are often described as “flu-like”. Symptoms include:
- Upset stomach and/or vomiting
- General feeling of weakness
- Breathing difficulties
- Chest pain
Everyone is exposed to small amounts during their daily routines, but inhaling too much can lead to CO poisoning.
If you breathe in a lot of CO it can make you pass out or kill you. People who are sleeping or drunk can die from CO poisoning before they have symptoms. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
What To Do for Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
If a person is exposed to unsafe levels of carbon monoxide, this can be life-threatening. If symptoms are present, call 911 right away, get out of the house, and move to fresh air. If the person is unconscious, this is very serious. Exit the building and get help immediately.
If you’ve been exposed to CO, go to the hospital or call an ambulance ASAP, even if no symptoms are present. Doctors and nurses will take a blood sample to determine the level of carbon monoxide present in the blood. If high levels are found, treatment will be given. Treatment usually given to a person who has been poisoned by CO includes being given oxygen, or in some cases, through a hyperbaric oxygen chamber.
How to Prevent CO Poisoning
You can do several things that are proactive in preventing you, or your loved ones, from being exposed to dangerous levels of carbon monoxide.
- Install CO alarms throughout your home (be sure to learn where and where not to place them – it matters!)
- Don’t run your car or other engines in closed spaces.
- Ventilate your home, especially install vents near furnaces or other appliances that run on oil or gas.
Every year in the United States, there are tens of thousands of cases of carbon monoxide poisoning; more than 400 Americans die from unintentional poisoning. People who are severely poisoned usually do not have a good prognosis, or worse, die from it. In addition to installing CO alarms on every floor and near major appliances that give off CO, be sure to check the batteries regularly.
Did you know here at Protect America don’t just offer monitored home security, we also offer an entire line of home safety products? Our detectors monitor carbon monoxide levels in the home and the alarms go off if dangerous levels are present. Additionally, our alarms also alert fire officials who will be immediately dispatched to your home to look for the source of the CO.
To learn more about our line of security and safety products, call Protect America today. We are happy to provide more information, along with a free quote.