Ah, summer days are rapidly approaching. When you go outside, you can hear the buzzing…
Experiencing nature is fun but it can also be dangerous because there are poisonous plants like foxglove. Foxgloves are plants that bear bell-shaped flowers. They bloom during July and September just as you are enjoying your hiking, camping or other outdoor adventure. Their flowers are beautiful but deadly. So let us take a look at this beautifully deceptive plant so that you can be safe during your adventure.
There are about 20 species of foxglove but not all of them contain the same level of toxicity. However, digitalis purpurea or the common foxgloves that we see are truly potent and they are poisonous from the root to the seeds. A nibble is enough to kill an unwary victim. Upon ingestion, the victim will experience diarrhea, vomiting and nausea. Other nastier early symptoms are severe headache, wild hallucinations and abdominal pain. Take note that these nasty symptoms are just “early.” When not treated immediately, the victim will suffer tremors, slow pulse, cerebral disturbances, convulsions, and fatal heart disturbances.
By now you have a clue how to avoid poisoning: never eat it. Better yet, stay away from it. When you see foxgloves in the field, you can appreciate their beauty by just looking at them. Do not touch them to prevent any risk and remember that no risk is always better. But in case someone wants to learn a lesson the hard way and lets the poisonous plant go inside his or her body, here are the following things that you can do:
· Check the victim’s heart and pulse as well as his or her vision. The victim may become disoriented or faint.
· Immediately call the National Poison Control Center (1 800 222 1222 ). Through this hotline, you will be able to speak with poison experts.
· According to the instructions of the experts, prevent the poison from spreading throughout the victim’s body until he or she is brought to the emergency room for professional medical treatment.
Foxglove poisoning is serious but if the victim survives the first 24 hours, he or she has good chances for recovery.
This article is part of the Poisonous Plants series.