Parents warned over 'button battery' dangers

An image showing the damage batteries can cause to tissue, in a demonstration on a piece of ham.

An image showing the damage batteries can cause to tissue, in a demonstration on a piece of ham.

Parents are being warned of the risks of coin-sized lithium batteries, commonly found in small electronic devices, like calculators and remote controls.

Apart from the fact that they can be swallowed as they are so small, the tiny batteries can lodge in children's throats.

From there, they react to saliva which triggers an electrical current, that can severely burn the oesophagus in just hours.

But health authorities worry parents are not aware just how deadly button batteries can be, despite around four Aussie kids being hospitalised a week for these kinds of injuries.

"In Australia, the awareness of risks associated with button batteries is worryingly low," Kidsafe SA CEO, Helen Noblet, said.

"There have been a significant number of these cases in recent months, and it would appear that they are on the increase."

For more information on how you can prevent kids swallowing button batteries, visit The Australian Battery Controlled campaign here.

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