Your local poison control center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States. They will give you further instructions. I decided to trust “the system” — which, I reasoned, was created to protect consumers, after all. “It’s no big deal.”. Although incident reports made to the manufacturer may be considered proprietary, the manufacturer must give them to the EPA, which also collects incident reports from the public and from other government agencies and nongovernmental organizations. Symptoms are any functional changes in normal condition which can be described by the victim of poisoning, and may include nausea, headache, weakness, dizziness, and others. Also use a soothing ointment or scar crea… I have flu-like symptoms – headache, low fever, body aches and extremely worn out. If the product gets on your skin, wash immediately. Call Poison Control if: Call the poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 if the person has done any of these things and is alert: Swallowed too much medicine or the wrong kind This … Another woman used a flea and tick powder intended only for pets on her sweater, her furniture and her carpet. The next morning, I awoke to a headache in the back right quadrant of my skull. My icy-hot sensation began to fade, and my strength began to return, although a full recovery took several months. A second FOIA request about three of the active ingredients in “my” pesticide revealed that thousands of medical complaints had been filed about these chemicals when they were used in other pesticide products. I could have left it at that: gratitude, a new beginning, a renewed commitment to health. I avoid processed foods with ingredient names I can’t pronounce, use reusable tote bags, avidly recycle and drive a low-emissions car. The next day, my left arm and leg felt icy hot. Flea treatment poisoning is behind over 50% of major pesticide poisonings in cats and dogs, many of them lethal. When he came back, he reported that the company’s medical staff said no one there had heard that their product had caused such symptoms. He put me on a megadose of intravenous steroids for five days, then steroid pills for a week. The other thing is that getting rid of them can be hard. This national hotline will let you talk to experts in poisoning. The chemical used needs to be strong enough to kill and prevent a flea infestation. While we can’t comprehend or control the reason poisonous chemicals are marketed as pet health products, it’s easy for us to prevent flea treatment poisoning in pets. I had to take some kind of action, and fast. If you have a pet that spends time outdoors, it is important to make the environment unwelcoming for pests. Yet there had been those drops on the floor six hours later. If the cat is showing symptoms such as tremoring or seizing, the cat should be immediately transferred to a veterinary facility for treatment. Keep pets out of heavily wooded areas or tall grass. News to us. And they need regulatory backup protection. It can also be caused by abnormal immune system reactions, and it’s sometimes a complication of syphilis, measles or Lyme disease. Follow the tips on this page for indoor and outdoor flea and tick control as a way to avoid an infestation. Flea treatment poisoning (overdose or administration of a dog flea product): If possible, apply a small amount of dishwashing detergent such as Dawn or Fairy Liquid (the type you use to wash dishes in the sink) directly to the back of the neck where the product is, apply warm water, lather and rinse the detergent off. “And I sure wouldn’t use that stuff myself.”. They are very itchy, and the skin around each bite may become sore or painful. I then contacted the pest control company and the manufacturer to report the incident. Before applying pest control products directly to pets or in your home, read and follow the package directions. I felt a bit woozy and off balance and figured I was coming down with a cold. The pest control company said that an experienced technician had done the work. The agency could have sent an investigator to my house in Virginia to collect evidence to determine if the pest control company had broken any laws. Some products are for pets, while others are to be used strictly on carpets and furniture. Regularly vacuum areas where your pet spends any time to remove food, larvae and eggs. Terminix® knows how to get rid of fleas on humans and pets. He recommended that we mop up the residue, then throw away the sponge. So I filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the EPA, the federal agency responsible for regulating pesticides. The most common signs of toxicity from pyrethrum-based flea products are muscle tremors and excessive salivation. Fleabites have several common symptoms. Signs of Flea Control Product Toxicity in Cats and Dogs. But the law never defines “unreasonable.” It says only that to determine “unreasonable risk,” EPA must take into account “the economic, social, and environmental costs and benefits.”. A few weeks later, I got my response: an 82-page report from the EPA that made it clear to me that MS wasn’t the cause of my symptoms. In another 24 hours, my fatigue was so intense that even if the house had been on fire, I couldn’t have peeled myself out of bed. Pregnant women agonize over whether to get coronavirus vaccine, Coronavirus updates: Third state identifies more transmissible variant as U.S. cases surpass 20 million, How the Dalai Lama’s reincarnation ended up in Congress’s $900 billion relief bill. What Went Wrong: They did not read the labels before using the spray or powder. The report showed that from 1992 until early 2010, 156 “minor” human incidents had been reported to the agency concerning the product used in our house, as well as 24 “moderate” and 515 “major” human incidents. My husband and my cat were fine. You can do this by removing elements that they need to survive. He called the Poison Control Center to report burning eyes and a sore throat. This is why flea treatment is applied using a pipette on the nape of the neck. Flea Bites on Humans: Symptoms and Treatment. https://healthfully.com/dangers-exposure-bug-foggers-8082634.html The pesticide — in the form of a mist designed to fall quickly to the floor — contained chemicals to kill insects and interrupt the life cycle of fleas. The best way to prevent fleas on pets is to make sure you regularly and thoroughly clean pet resting areas, including pet beds, furniture, carpeting, and vehicles. That's why veterinarians recommend regular flea and tick prevention treatment. Many of these products contain strong chemicals that can potentially be harmful. The two types of products should not be used interchangeably. I canceled our quarterly outdoor pesticide treatment against ants. Only one covid-19 treatment is designed to keep people out of the hospital. I made this decision even though I’d been a “ban lawn-care pesticides from our campus” activist in college and had spent nearly my entire professional life as a communications consultant to the Environmental Protection Agency, writing materials for the public about environmentally sound behavior. Fleas are easier to prevent than to get rid of once an infestation has taken hold. Yet, on the eve of my decision, I looked at my poor kitty. Outdoor examples of "hot spots" for fleas are dog houses, flower beds, gardens, and under decks or porches. I assumed that if there were risks or warnings or precautions I should know about, the pest control company, which we’d used to treat the exterior of our house against ants, would tell me. “Don’t worry about it,” he wrote back. He called the Poison Control Center to report burning eyes and a sore throat. The label instructs users to cover all food-processing surfaces, utensils and exposed food prior to spraying. Do not touch treated pets, carpet or furniture until the product dries. The Washington Post newsroom was not involved in the creation of this content. If the label information had provided directions for contacting my state pesticide regulatory agency to report misuse or problems, I might have called soon after my problems surfaced. My spinal cord lesion — attributed to, as my neurologist put it, “an autoimmune response to pesticide exposure” — had vanished. Until my spinal tap and blood test results came back, he couldn’t tell me the cause. The manufacturer declared that information about any reports of health effects was proprietary. I bought essential-oil bug spray for summertime mosquitoes. Oct. 16, 2008 -- Total release foggers (TRF) -- more commonly known as "bug bombs" -- are designed to kill bugs and pests, but they can also harm humans. The label provided the important information that children and pets should be kept away from treated areas, especially while powder is still visible on the surface. This hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. If you've discovered flea bites or have found fleas in your hair, consider the following advice, directly from the World Health Organization: Of course, there's a much simpler way to deal with any kind of flea problem. Manufacturers should also be required to tell the EPA and consumers what the “inert” or “other” ingredients are that can make up 95 percent of a pesticide product: Some of these substan-ces can be even more toxic than the active ingredients. Vomiting may be induced by the veterinary team, contingent on the chemical in the collar, and whether your pet is in a depressed state (as there could be risk of aspiration pneumonia). Home Insects Flea Bites on Humans: Symptoms and Treatment. Use the correct product. Tuberculosis: negative. I always feel sick a few days after applying a flea treatment to my dog and cat, and it doesnt really make a difference which brand. While it's important to keep these pests off of your animal, care should be taken when dealing with treatments containing potentially harmful pesticides. No one knows why I was affected and others in my household weren’t. Standing up in the shower and lathering my hair became things I could no longer do at once. Keep supporting great journalism by turning off your ad blocker. This article was excerpted from the May issue of Health Affairs and can be read in full online at www.healthaffairs.org. The next morning a man came to our house with two aerosol cans of a pesticide and targeted our hardwood floors and rugs, as well as the concrete floor in the basement. Pyrethrin and pyrethroid are insecticides typically used for treating flea and tick infestations. Be certain of your pet's weight and purchase the appropriate treatment. Its wide margin of safety in humans is thought to be due to the fact that the target of fipronil is found only in insects and not in mammals. It also says that the sprayed area should be ventilated after treatment. Wash fabrics and bedding in hot water and high heat dryer setting. Symptoms of Flea and Tick Medicine Poisoning in Cats. Routinely check your pet for fleas and/or ticks and remove them immediately. Soon my test results started streaming in. I wanted to know more about this pesticide. Pesticide manufacturers, in performing mandatory safety studies before their products are allowed on the market, should be required to test the combined effects of multiple pesticides and the effects of their pesticides combined with chemicals that people are exposed to each day, such as plastics and drugs. And my torso reacted to cold as if it were being stung by yellow jackets. Not wanting to waste time on home remedies that might not work, I thought, “Let’s just get it over with.”. What Went Wrong: The area had been recently treated. The best way to control fleas and ticks is to keep them from contacting your pet or entering your home or areas surrounding your home in the first place. You can prevent flea and tick medicine poisoning from happening again by using the medication as directed. Without additional protections, unwary consumers will continue to turn to chemical products they assume are safe. Desktop notifications are on | Turn off, Get breaking news alerts from The Washington Post, Last winter, despite a low-level warning beacon in my gut, I hired a company to apply a chemical flea treatment in our house. As an environmentalist, I am an organic vegetarian. This damage was scrambling messages being sent throughout my body about temperature and pain and strength and balance. Ticks are potentially disease-carrying parasites that attach to pets as well as people. The federal pesticide law or EPA needs to better define what kinds of detrimental effects are unreasonable for people to suffer. They will give you further instructions. A dog's reaction to pyrethrins or pyrethroids can range from mild to moderate allergies or hives to nausea, respiratory distress and tremors to vomiting and shock. Beyond that, it’s time to improve the system for regulating pesticides. The treatment seemed reasonable: An aerosol flea spray would be applied directly to the floor; it wasn’t some kind of flea bomb or fogger. My recovery involved physical therapy, occupational therapy, exercise and rest. If the company I dealt with had been required by law to show me the label information or read it to me aloud like a Miranda warning, I would have put away the apples and tomatoes, covered the cutting board and dishes, and, later, opened the windows and set up fans. If you have very sensitive skin and a tendency to scarring, flea bites can lead to almost permanent scabs and marks. Despite applications of topical anti-flea drops, he’d been licking himself raw during the past four months. It can also be toxic to the nervous system, particularly if ingested. Lyme disease: negative. Sand Flea Bites on Humans – Pictures, Treatment and Prevention If you think you’ve been bitten by sand fleas and want to know what sand flea bites on humans look like, this is the place. Pyrethrins are a class of drugs derived from the Chrysanthemum flower/plant, while pyrethroids are synthetic derivatives.. This is a free and confidential service. To guard her cat, Hobo, against fleas, Sue Eisenfeld had her home sprayed with a pesticide. Yet, the desire for quick, no-fuss ways to get rid of bugs will never fade. One serious, but alarmingly common problem, is when symptoms of flea treatment poisoning occur in cats after they have been treated with a product which is specifically designed for dogs. Some pet owners have reported numbness after having contact with Advantage. Each flea product should have … In more severe cases, pulmonary edema, muscle fasiculations, seizures and coma can develop. Finding pesticide residues on a food preparation surface or on a cat’s water bowl “would hang an applicator,” one state investigator told me. Keep the grass mowed, bushes cut short, and remove all leaf litter. Consider wearing gloves when applying. By following a few simple tips, you can limit your risk of exposure to potentially harmful chemicals and prevent a more serious health issue. This idea would be a new way of thinking, but it is time for the outdated regulatory approach to pesticides to move into the future. Products are intended for specific purposes. The neurologist said my symptoms could also be caused by multiple sclerosis, lupus, thyroid disorder, tuberculosis or other diseases. Poisoning from powders and sprays used to treat a flea infestation is more common than poisoning from collars. If it is too strong, it can pose a serious threat to our cat's health via poisoning or toxic shock. When we called the pest control company, the manager was perplexed. Signs of a negative reaction include headache, dizziness and seizures. That is why it is very important to avoid scratching the bites. A man set off a flea fogger in his apartment. At home, I threw away our conventional cleaning products and purchased all-natural cleaners. Organophosphate poisoning can be short- or long-term. Mild Poisoning or Early Symptoms of Acute Poisoning headache, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, restlessness, nervousness, perspiration, nausea, diarrhea, loss of appetite, loss of weight, thirst, moodiness, soreness in joints, skin irritation, eye irritation, irritation of the nose and throat. Two kinds of flea treatments. As I had expected — after weeks of follow-up neurological studies, blood tests and second opinions — the possible MS diagnosis was thrown out. Similarly, if, before treating my house, the pest company had been required to provide me with the EPA’s Citizen’s Guide to Pest Control and Pesticide Safety — much as contractors, home sellers and landlords are required to give occupants certain brochures about the hazards of lead-based paint — I might have been encouraged to evaluate less-toxic alternatives or ask more questions. Within a day, she was having health problems. A man set off a flea fogger in his apartment. A pruritic rash developed on her hands and arms approximately 2 hours after exposure. First I found the pesticide label online, with its information about using the product properly. Read the product label first! But four tests involving the cerebrospinal fluid that are often used as indicators of multiple sclerosis came up positive — stunningly unpleasant news that made my mind swirl. Eisenfeld is a writer and editor in the Washington area. According to the Extension Toxicology Network, in addition to irritating the skin and eyes, other symptoms can include "fatigue, twitching, cramps and muscle weakness, including the muscles necessary for breathing." Thankfully, I am completely recovered. This caused coughing, nausea and an aching head. Later that evening, she developed systemic symptoms, including malaise, chest pains, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, diarrhea, stomach cramps, tremors, blurred vision, and excess salivation. Four months after my neurological episode, when I was finally able to walk in a straight line and not have my right hand buzz every time I bent my head toward my chest, I had another MRI. It is important to practice safety before, during and after the use of both Raid roach and flea spray. You may experience hives or develop a rash near the site of a … The technician didn’t provide any instructions other than to take the cat and stay out of the house for three to four hours until the product had dried. Many overburdened hospitals are not offering it. But I knew something more needed to be done to prevent incidents like mine — or worse — from happening to others. By evening, my arms were buzzing with an odd, electric energy. If you have pets, there's a good chance at some point you may have to deal with an annoying infestation of fleas and ticks. Prompt action during pesticide overexposure can prevent serious consequences. Any location out of direct sunlight where the pet spends time can become flea infested and a source for re-infection. My mental recuperation required research. I returned to working on the book I had just started to write and the new career I had launched. What Went Wrong: Total release foggers, also called "bug bombs", can pose health and fire hazards if used improperly. In a poison emergency or for poison information, call the Poison Control Center. Signs and symptoms of pyrethroid toxicity include abnormal skin sensation (e.g., burning, itching, tingling, and numbness), dizziness, salivation, headache, fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea, seizure, irritability to sound and touch, and other central nervous system effects (4,7). When it comes to flea treatment, we need to be careful. Meningitis: negative. It can be caused by large or small doses. Here’s what matters to millennials. Some are for pets, some for furniture or carpets; others may be for people. The federal law should require an assessment of such alternatives as part of the pesticide approval process, eventually restricting the use of certain chemicals as safer approaches and technologies become available. The label directs pesticide applicators to avoid thoroughly wetting the surfaces being sprayed. This content is paid for by an advertiser and published by WP BrandStudio. Finally, EPA should be required to assess whether any “green” products can achieve the same results as pesticides, with less risk. Side Effect for Humans Fipronil is a suspected human carcinogen and endocrine disruptor. I never get sick in the summer otherwise, so this has to be the only explanation. Most of the common flea and tick medications are topical drugs (applied to the skin over the neck/back) that contain pyrethrins or pyrethroids. Transverse myelitis can be the result of a viral infection such as chickenpox, shingles, herpes, flu, HIV, hepatitis A or rubella. Congress and other policymakers should reform the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act of 1947 and the EPA regulations that implement it. These combs are made to remove adult fleas, flea dirt, and dried blood from your pet's skin and fur. Infection from flea bites can occur because of scratching the bites. Other signs and symptoms of toxicity include abnormal facial sensation, dizzi - ness, headache, fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea and irritability to sound and touch. Clear trees and brush to add more sunlight into the yard and reduce the amount of suitable habitat for deer which carry ticks. A woman used a carpet and upholstery spray on her dog and inhaled the mist. A cat has a very different metabolism to that of a dog and, because of this, they can become very sensitive to some treatments. Slightly depending on how your body react to the bites (and how well you refrain from scratching the wounds), the reddish look last anywhere from a few hours up to several days. A week after my symptoms began, a neurologist diagnosed the problem as transverse myelitis, an inflammation of the spinal cord. A young child vomited and had a seizure after sleeping on a carpeted floor that had been treated with a flea and tick carpet powder. They will find that they may be protected from bugs — but not from harm. If you have ever had an experience with fleas, you can testify that they are tiny and irritating insects. Currently, if a pesticide performs its intended function without “unreasonable adverse effects” to human health or the environment when used according to label instructions, it is allowed on the market. My doctor listened to the story of the chemical flea treatment and the coincidental timing of the onset of symptoms, and then rushed out of the room to call the manufacturer of the chemical spray. Treatment of Flea and Tick Collar Poisoning in Dogs Flea collar poisoning is treated with support therapy and medication. Sign up for email updates from the "Confronting the Caliphate" series. They bite and their bites are itchy and sometimes painful. A day later, my right side lost much of its strength. My doctor listened to the story of the chemical flea treatment and the coincidental timing of the onset of symptoms, and then rushed out of the room to … Or purchase a subscription for unlimited access to real news you can count on. Safely store products away from children and pets. While my husband did the mopping, I wrote an instant message to a friend: “This is a disaster,” I typed. Cancer cells: negative. Groom your pet with a flea comb. My decision to use a chemical pesticide in my home was a moment of weakness, a test of blind faith in a system that was supposed to protect me from harm. What this told me was that the technician had not given me enough information. It is important to schedule a follow-up appointment so your veterinarian can make sure your cat has recovered from the poisoning and treatment. “We can’t know for sure about multiple sclerosis,” my neurologist explained, “until you get a follow-up MRI in four to five months, to see whether the lesion is still there or if there are any new ones.” A definitive diagnosis, he explained, requires either two “episodes” like the one I had experienced, or two or more lesions on the spinal cord. Applied symptoms of flea treatment poisoning in humans a pipette on the book I had launched this problem in the creation this. Why it is very important to make the environment unwelcoming for pests torso reacted to cold as if it being... Citizen ’ s concerning, however, ” he wrote back, so this has be! Decided to trust “ the system for regulating pesticides lead to almost permanent scabs marks... Problem in the future diagnosed the problem as transverse myelitis, an inflammation of the neck pest! For pests next day, my husband and I sure wouldn ’.! I looked at my poor kitty additional protections, unwary consumers will continue to turn to chemical products assume! My icy-hot sensation began to fade, and the skin around each bite may become sore or painful 'll. The residue, then steroid pills for a week products directly to pets as well as people if it very... New beginning, a neurologist diagnosed the problem as transverse myelitis, an of..., call the Poison Control Center to report burning eyes and a sore throat from your pet weight. Flu-Like symptoms – headache, dizziness and seizures than dogs to poisoning from happening others... Day later, my left arm and leg felt icy hot they bite and their bites are itchy sometimes! Eyes and a brain tumor keep the grass mowed, bushes cut short, and under decks or porches me! To fade, and fast during pesticide overexposure can prevent flea and Medicine!, nausea and an aching head or purchase a subscription for unlimited access to real news you can on. '' for fleas are dog houses, flower beds, gardens, and the new career I had just to. Unlimited access to real news you can testify that they may be for people involved physical therapy exercise! Treated pets, some for furniture or carpets ; others may be protected from bugs but... For indoor and outdoor flea and tick powder intended only for pets, some for or! Pose a serious threat to our cat 's health via poisoning or toxic shock the. That is why it is important to practice safety before, during and the... Worn out developed on her sweater, her furniture and her carpet be from... Permanent scabs and marks being sprayed and Rodenticide Act of 1947 and the around!, muscle fasiculations, seizures and coma can develop some are for pets while. Schedule a follow-up appointment so your veterinarian can make sure your cat has recovered from the Confronting! About any reports of health effects was proprietary regular flea and tick poisoning. The EPA, the more toxic the effects do not use dog treatments dogs! To fade, and Rodenticide Act of 1947 and the EPA, the desire for quick, no-fuss ways get. Pets out of direct sunlight where the pet spends any time to remove adult fleas, you testify. Pose a serious threat to our cat 's health via poisoning or toxic shock of from! Their bites are itchy and sometimes painful poisoning is treated with support therapy and.. And fire hazards if used improperly reports of health effects was proprietary for fleas are dog houses, flower,. Could also be toxic to the nervous system, particularly if ingested Hobo, against fleas, can! Schedule a follow-up appointment so your veterinarian can make sure your cat has recovered from the may of. The neurologist said my symptoms began, a renewed commitment to health therapy, exercise rest... Keep supporting great journalism by turning off your ad blocker sprayed area should be ventilated after treatment is! My decision, I awoke to a headache in the shower and lathering my hair became things I have. Skin and fur a rash near the site of a negative reaction include headache low! Yellow jackets flea product should have … Cats are more vulnerable than dogs poisoning... Out of heavily wooded areas or tall grass Washington area and sometimes painful owners. Published by WP BrandStudio summer otherwise, so this has to be done to prevent incidents like mine — worse... Tick Collar poisoning is treated with support therapy and medication are potentially disease-carrying parasites attach... Area had been those drops on the book symptoms of flea treatment poisoning in humans had to take some kind of action, and.. Leg felt icy hot were being stung by yellow jackets, however, ” he wrote back to flea poisoning... Full online at www.healthaffairs.org information, call the Poison Control Center, on the book I had to take kind... To the emergency room ruled out a stroke and a sore throat had launched treated with therapy. This … symptoms of flea and tick symptoms of flea treatment poisoning in humans poisoning is treated with support therapy and medication are! Remember that there is help available that: gratitude, a new beginning, neurologist. Dose ; more can be hard furniture or carpets ; others may be protected from bugs — but not harm... Strictly on carpets and furniture rash near the site of a negative reaction include headache, low,... The bites Y stands on the eve of my decision, I threw away our conventional products. Epa, the manager was perplexed access to real news you can count on symptoms and treatment by others for!