Some of the youngest opioid victims are curious toddlers - WNEM TV 5

Some of the youngest opioid victims are curious toddlers

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Milwaukee, WI (AP) -

Some of the youngest victims of the nation's opioid epidemic are children under age 5 who die after swallowing adult pills.

The number of children's deaths is still small relative to the overall toll from opioids, but toddler fatalities have climbed steadily over the last 10 years.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 14 children in the U.S. under age 5 died after ingesting opioids in 2000. By 2015, that number climbed to 51.

Curious toddlers find the drugs in a mother's purse or accidentally dropped on the floor. Sometimes a parent fails to secure the child-resistant cap on a bottle of painkillers.

Chewing just one pill can release a fatal concentration of a time-released drug into their small bodies.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. 

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