Shaving cream poisoning
Shaving cream is a cream applied to the face or body before shaving the skin. Shaving cream poisoning occurs when someone accidentally or intentionally eats shaving cream.
This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual poison exposure. If you have an exposure, you should call your local emergency number (such as 911) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.
- Anionic surfactants (soaps)
- Nonionic surfactants (soaps)
Shaving cream is not very poisonous. Most symptoms are due to allergic reactions or when shaving cream touches the eyes. Symptoms may include:
- Blurred vision
- Breathing difficulty
- Burning pain in the throat
- Burns to the eye
- Diarrhea (watery, bloody) or vomiting
- Stomach pain
Seek immediate medical help. Do NOT make a person throw up unless told to do so by Poison Control or a health care professional.
If the chemical was swallowed, immediately give the person water or milk, unless instructed otherwise by a health care provider. Do NOT give water or milk if the patient is having symptoms (such as vomiting, convulsions, or a decreased level of alertness) that make it hard to swallow.
Before Calling Emergency
Determine the following information:
- Patient's age, weight, and condition
- Name of the product (ingredients and strengths, if known)
- Time it was swallowed
- Amount swallowed
The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.
This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The health care provider will measure and monitor your vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated as appropriate. You may receive:
- Breathing support, including a tube through the mouth into the lungs and a breathing machine (ventilator)
- Chest x-ray
- Fluids through a vein (by IV)
- Medications to treat symptoms
- Tube through the mouth into the stomach to wash out the stomach (gastric lavage)
How well you do depends on the amount of poison swallowed and how quickly treatment is received. The faster you get medical help, the better the chance for recovery.
Because these products are not very toxic, recovery is very likely.
|Review Date: 1/20/2014
Reviewed By: Jacob L. Heller, MD, MHA, Emergency Medicine, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.