Don’t Consume or Inject Household Cleaners to Treat COVID-19

The disease COVID-19 caused by novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 has caused millions of illnesses and hundreds of thousands of deaths worldwide.

There is currently no proven treatment for the virus or COVID-19 itself, although scientists are working to find one.

You should not ingest or inject household cleaners as a treatment for COVID-19. They are toxic and can cause serious harm or death if consumed.

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What to Do to Keep Household Cleaners From Causing Harm

Products like bleach, sanitizer, or multi-purpose cleaners do have an important role in preventing the spread of the coronavirus. They can disinfect surfaces like doorknobs, tables, counters, and more to kill the virus.

However, these products are poisonous if swallowed, injected, or otherwise consumed. To prevent yourself from harm, follow these steps:

  • Read the product label to learn how it should be used and the dangers it can have if used incorrectly.
  • Keep cleaning products and other potential poisonous materials away from children and pets, either locked away or stored high and out of reach.
  • Always keep cleaning products in their original container.
  • Use child-resistant packaging.

What Should I Do if I Accidentally Consume Something Poisonous?

If you, or someone you know, accidentally ingest a poisonous product, call 1-800-222-1222 to reach the Pittsburgh Poison Center. A professional from the Pittsburgh Poison Center or the Poison Center closest to you will help. However, if the person who ingested the poisonous product is not breathing or is otherwise unresponsive, call 911.

The Poison Center is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at no charge.

For more information and poison prevention tips, visit the Pittsburgh Poison Center online.

About UPMC

A $21 billion health care provider and insurer, Pittsburgh-based UPMC is inventing new models of patient-centered, cost-effective, accountable care. The largest nongovernmental employer in Pennsylvania, UPMC integrates more than 90,000 employees, 40 hospitals, 700 doctors’ offices and outpatient sites, and a 3.8 million-member Insurance Services Division, the largest medical insurer in western Pennsylvania. In the most recent fiscal year, UPMC contributed $1.4 billion in benefits to its communities, including more care to the region’s most vulnerable citizens than any other health care institution, and paid more than $500 million in federal, state, and local taxes. Working in close collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences, UPMC shares its clinical, managerial, and technological skills worldwide through its innovation and commercialization arm, UPMC Enterprises, and through UPMC International. U.S. News & World Report consistently ranks UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside on its annual Honor Roll of America’s Best Hospitals and ranks UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh on its Honor Roll of America’s Best Children’s Hospitals. For more information, go to