One woman in Pennsylvania is using a frightening incident involving water beads and her child to warn and inform other parents.
Anyone who has had small children understands they all possess a curious nature. Children enjoy crawling around, feeling and touching anything and everything within their grasp. Once children reach out, grab and firmly secure an object, the item's next location will be the child's mouth.
It's a fact that children put or will attempt to put everything in their mouths. For Whitney Reese, this truth made for a horrifying and terrifying reality for her and her husband, according to Fox News. Unbeknownst to them, their daughter had swallowed water beads.
“I truly can’t emphasize enough how dangerous these water beads are to kids, babies, even pets,” Whitney said.
The scary situation began when the couple noticed that their infant daughter, Harper Reese, had developed a rash all over her body late last year. But Harper's condition only continued to deteriorate. The infant started throwing up wildly, which caused the parents to rush the child to the hospital.
Unfortunately, for the Reese family, Harper appeared to get even worse. Fox News reports that little Harper's abdomen started swelling, and her energy level was nonexistent.
While in the hospital, medical professionals were stumped as to what was responsible for her condition. Doctors believed that instead of an intestinal blockage, Harper was suffering from a virus.
Days later, the child did pass a water bead. Doctors determined that Harper had at least one more in her system.
The Child Underwent Surgery to Remove The Other Water Bead
The child, who had turned 1 year old on New Year's Day 2023, underwent surgery to remove the other water bead. She was released from the hospital weeks later.
“After having a bowel resection and ... all the inflammation and edema the water beads caused, her bowels were still very irritated," Whitney said.
"Water beads were initially used as agricultural products intended to maintain soil moisture," according to Poison.org. Other uses for water beads include use by florists "to keep a beautiful floral arrangement hydrated" and "as therapy toys for children "with sensory processing or autism spectrum disorders," according to the site.
Poison.org states that if swallowed the beads can expand and possibly cause "serious and sometimes life-threatening intestinal blockage."
"See that you don't despise one of these little ones, for I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven." – Matthew 18:10
Water beads come in a variety of colors, shapes, & sizes. Young children may confuse colorful beads for candy.
If a child swallows a water bead, the bead(s) could lead to choking or cause a bowel blockage as they can continue to expand.
— TexasPoisonControl (@TXPoisonControl) April 27, 2023