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How to Talk to Your Kids About Needles

Talking to your kids about needles may be uncomfortable, but it is important for children to know what to do if they find a needle or other sharp objects on the ground.

Talking about needles can be done in an age-appropriate manner. For example, for younger children, having this conversation does not need to include talking about drugs and addiction, but older children could be taught about the dangers of injection drug use.

Remind your children that there are many things on the ground that can harm them, and teach them to not touch anything they find on the ground that does not belong to them.

Tips for Talking to your Children:

For young children (up to grade 6), talk about:

  • How needles on the ground can be sharp and unsafe
  •  “Don’t Touch” needles or other sharp objects
  • Ask an adult for help
  • Making sure their friends away from a needle on ground
For older children (grades 7-12), talk about:
  • Don’t touch the sharp end of the needle
  • If possible, use gloves and tongs to pick up needle
  • Never put the cap back on needle
  • Place needle, point end first, in hard-sided plastic container, and tightly seal
  • Wash your hands with soap and water after picking up needle
  • Give sealed container to an adult
  • Never put needles down the toilet, or in the garbage
  • Ask an adult for help if you do not feel comfortable picking up a needle
Injuries from needles can be prevented by making sure children know what to do.

If you would like more information about talking to your kids about needles, call your local Northwestern Health Unit office.