FOX 47 - Health News
Donna Lotzer is poison education coordinator for UW Hospital in Madison. She says there are a lot of myths about holiday poisons, starting with mistletoe and holly.
"Mistletoe is good for kissing," she said. "You'll notice nowadays mistletoe has plastic leaves and real fruit, or real leaves and plastic fruit. That's because it was believed eating a single berry or leaf could be highly toxic."
Not true, Lotzer says, unless you eat a couple bushels.
Poinsettia plants have gotten a bad reputation over the years as being poisonous. Not so, experts say, but the white substance inside can be irritating, and if it gets on your skin, you should wash it off.
When it comes to real dangers, what you put on your Christmas tree could put you at risk, especially old tinsel.
"If it's material which is soft, and breaks easily, it very well may be lead-containing tinsel," Lotzer said. "Modern tinsel is plastic."
Lotzer says you should also forgo decorative bubble lights, which contain methylene chloride, a dangerous chemical.
"If you get it on your skin or inhale it, it's irritating but it's also known to be a carcinogen."
If you have a poison emergency during the holidays, you can call 1-800-222-1222 for help.
Online reporting by Jeff Angileri
Sun. - Fri. on FOX 47 News at 9!
Top Health Headlines (foxnews.com)
|WHO revises up number of health workers killed by Ebola in Sierra Leone|
Thirty more health care workers have died of Ebola in Sierra Leone than previously thought, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday, suggesting the risk to medical staff may have been understated.
|Ever-present endemic Ebola now major concern for disease experts|
West Africa's Ebola epidemic is the largest the world has ever seen, but infectious disease experts are almost as fearful of a long-term legacy in humans as they are about the deaths it is causing right now.
|How a stillbirth landed one teen mom in prison|
In October 2004, 17-year-old Salvadoran Christina Quintanilla was seven months pregnant with her second baby.
|Respiratory illness spreads to more than half of US states, says CDC|
More than half of U.S. states have confirmed cases of a respiratory illness that has sickened children with symptoms ranging from mild colds to more severe breathing difficulties, according to health officials.
|FDA warns doctors to beware fake drug distributors|
U.S. health regulators are trying to help doctors spot counterfeit and unapproved drugs by raising awareness of illegal operations that peddle bogus drugs to health professionals.
Tonight on FOX 47
5:00pm Two and a Half Men
5:30pm Big Bang Theory
6:00pm Modern Family
6:30pm Big Bang Theory
8:00pm New Girl
8:30pm The Mindy Project
9:00pm FOX 47 News at 9
9:35pm Modern Family
10:05pm Mike & Molly
10:35pm Mike & Molly
11:05pm Two and a Helf Men
11:35pm The Simpsons