According to the CDC, at least 430 people die in the U.S. every year due to unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning. Lately, news on deaths due to unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning is becoming too common. Carbon monoxide, (CO) is a tasteless, colorless and odorless gas produced by burning fuel. CO poisoning occurs when the air is filled with too much carbon monoxide and your body replaces the oxygen in your red blood cells with carbon monoxide. As scary as carbon monoxide poisoning can be, it can be prevented. The best way of preventing carbon monoxide poisoning is to be informed.
Here are some tips for preventing CO poisoning:
- The most important thing to do is to install carbon monoxide detectors. Along with your smoke alarms, be sure to change the batteries every six months.
- Keep fuel-burning appliances properly vented. Never run any type of gas-powered engine less than 20 feet from an open door or window.
- Contact a health care professional immediately if you have any symptoms of CO poisoning. The most common symptoms are: dizziness, confusion, headache, chest pain, nausea and vomiting. Please remember, if you have been drinking or are asleep, you can die from carbon monoxide poisoning before having any of the symptoms.
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