As electronic devices get smaller and more portable, so do their batteries. Many everyday devices, such as watches, remotes and small toys, use lithium coin batteries that we may not think of as being dangerous for children.
Unfortunately, coin batteries pose a serious risk, particularly for younger children who love to explore the world with their mouths. Lithium coin batteries are very small, and if swallowed, they can cause serious injury or even death. Between 2019 and 2020, over 1,200 children were admitted to the ER after swallowing a coin battery, a number that increases every year as our electronic devices get more compact.
What are lithium coin batteries?
Lithium coin batteries are a small type of lithium battery filled with a small amount of sodium hydroxide, a very harsh chemical that is as corrosive as lye. If ingested, this chemical can cause serious injuries, including long-term illness and death.
Know which devices use coin lithium batteries
Take an inventory of the electronics in your home that use lithium coin batteries and make sure the battery compartment of each device is securely in place. If the compartment doesn’t screw shut, place a piece of strong tape over it to ensure it doesn’t accidentally come open.
Keep them out of reach
Check your home for any loose lithium coin batteries. Look under sofas and beds, on shelves, in easily accessible drawers and anywhere that children play or explore. Store all of your batteries somewhere high and far out of your child’s reach.
The accidental swallowing of a lithium coin battery is avoidable, but accidents happen. If you believe your child has swallowed a lithium coin battery, or if they are exhibiting signs of battery ingestion, take them to the emergency room immediately.
The health and safety of your child is of utmost importance at Bard & Didriksen Pediatrics. Please feel free to contact us for more information on the dangers of lithium coin and button batteries. We are here to answer any questions or concerns you may have about making your home safer for your child.