Some people who have swallowed a poisonous substance or overdosed on medication will be admitted to hospital for examination and treatment.

Possible treatments that can be used to treat poisoning include:

  • activated charcoal – sometimes used to treat someone who’s been poisoned; the charcoal binds to the poison and stops it being further absorbed into the blood
  • antidotes – these are substances that either prevent the poison from working or reverse its effects
  • sedatives – may be given if the person is agitated
  • a ventilator (breathing machine) – may be used if the person stops breathing
  • anti-epileptic medicine – may be used if the person has seizures (fits)