Why is carbon monoxide so deadly?
Carbon monoxide poisoning is the number one cause of accidental poisoning deaths in North America. More than 70 per cent of carbon monoxide deaths or injuries in Ontario occur in the home.
When you inhale carbon monoxide, it can cause brain damage, suffocation or death. Because you cannot see, smell or taste this deadly gas, poisoning can happen to anyone, any time, anywhere. Everyone is at risk but pregnant women, young children, senior citizens and people with heart and lung problems are at greater risk. If your home is well sealed or not well ventilated, the levels of carbon monoxide in the air may easily rise to deadly levels.
Carbon monoxide poisoning and the flu seem a lot alike at first. Early warning signs of low-level poisoning include tiredness, headaches, dizziness, nausea or vomiting and shortness of breath. Your skin may also turn pink or red in response to rising blood pressure. If you experience any of these symptoms, you may be suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning and should call 9-1-1 as well as talk to your doctor.