The Bottom Line

Unintentionally swallowing a few match advice is not dangerous yet would be meant to reason some minor wake up to the mouth and stomach. Swallowing a huge number of matches can cause serious results including damages to red blood cells and also organs such as the kidneys and also liver.

You are watching: What is the tip of a match made of


*

The full Story

Matches are made from small sticks of wood or cardboard coated on one reminder with ignitable materials. The enhance tip is struck throughout a suitable surface to ignite the match. Typically, matches room packaged in publications of 20 cardboard pole or box containing varying amounts of wood sticks. The two main classifications, based upon the required strike surface, room strike-anywhere matches (sometimes referred to as friction matches) and safety matches (sometimes referred to as strike-on-box matches).

Strike-anywhere matches can be ignited by striking the guideline on a selection of hard, rough, and dry surfaces such together a rock, brick, or hardened concrete. Safety matches will just ignite once struck versus a specially prepared surface, which is usually discovered on the match book or box.

Depending top top the complement type, the tips deserve to contain potassium chlorate, potassium dichromate, sulfur, and phosphorus sesquisulfide. Friction and the resulting chemistry reaction room responsible because that the flame. Strike-anywhere matches contain all the important reactive chemistry on the pointer of the hardwood stick. Safety and security matches location the phosphorous-containing chemical on the strike surface, which successfully eliminates the possibility for spontaneous ignition.

Although deadly fires have actually happened when children play through matches, the main toxic concern involves swallowing the match tip. The lumber or cardboard pole is generally taken into consideration non-toxic, return it can be a choking hazard. Toxic results can happen with many of the chemistry on a enhance tip, yet the most concerning substances are potassium chlorate and potassium dichromate.

For children, swallowing a couple of match tips generally reasons some minor gastrointestinal symptom such as irritation to the mouth or throat, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. These impacts are well tolerated uneven the vomiting and also diarrhea are severe and also lead come dehydration. Obviously, if the match tip was still hot, a burn ~ above the lips or in the mouth can occur.

Deliberate gulp down of huge numbers that matches can occur in attempts come self-harm and also individuals through cautopyreiophagia, i beg your pardon is a type of pica that entails swallowing charred match heads. One of the toxic results with large ingestions of matches is hemolysis, i beg your pardon is a break down of the red blood cells. This causes a decreased ability to transfer oxygen approximately the body. In addition to respiratory failure, damages to kidneys and also liver can occur.

Serious toxicity from swallowing matches can happen in young children who swallow an ext than 12 strike-anywhere matches or more than 20 security matches. Serious toxicity can also happen in world weighing much more than 50 kg (110 lbs) who swallow an ext than 80 strike-anywhere or security matches. For example, a 3-year-old boy occurred kidney fail after eating around 40 enhance heads. In a unique instance of a pregnant woman v cautopyreiophagia, her newborn daughter showed toxic results of exposure come the chemicals from the matches. The newborn had hemolysis of her red blood cells and also signs of liver injury. She compelled treatment in a hospital because that eight days.

The treatment for ingestion of enhance heads is come rinse and also spit through water to remove any remaining material discovered in the mouth, drink a few sips of water, and also watch for dehydration if vomiting or diarrhea occurs. Minor vomiting or diarrhea can be controlled at home by increasing fluid intake. Dehydration from serious vomiting or diarrhea as well as burns in the mouth require clinical evaluation. Anyone deliberately swallowing matches need to receive clinical evaluation.

If you doubt someone has actually swallowed match tips, check the webkeolistravelservices.comCONTROL® online device for guidance or call keolistravelservices.com manage at 1-800-222-1222.

Karen D. Dominguez, PharmDCertified specialist in keolistravelservices.com Information


keolistravelservices.comed?

call 1-800-222-1222 or

aid ME virtual

Prevention Tips

keep unlit (and lit!) matches out of with of children. Discard supplied matches as quickly as that is safe to carry out so. Aid keep matches out of the hands of curious children by to teach them come tell an adult when they uncover matches in their atmosphere or in the hand of another child.

This yes, really Happened

The mother of a 16-month-old boy dubbed keolistravelservices.com Control since the young was discovered sucking ~ above a whole publication of record matches. No matches were absent from the book. He to be fine and also had been provided water come drink, but she wanted to recognize if the boy essential to be taken to an emergency room. keolistravelservices.com regulate was able to identify that the boy can be controlled at home. The mommy was provided with a list of possible effects that can occur, such together irritation to the mouth or throat or vomiting. keolistravelservices.com control contacted the mother a few hours later on to examine on the boy. The boy did no develop any effects, and an unnecessary pilgrimage to an emergency room was avoided.


For an ext Information

Match and lighter fire safety. Quincy (MA): nationwide Fire security Association; .

Public education. Quincy (MA): nationwide Fire protection Association; .

References

Abu-Hamdan DK, Sondheimer JH, Mahajan SK. Cautopyreiophagia. Reason of life-threatening hyperkalemia in a patient undergoing hemodialysis. To be J Med. 1985 Oct;79(4):517-9.

Bernardo EO, Matos RI, Dawood T, Whiteway SL. Maternal cautopyreiophagia as a rare reason of neonatal hemolysis: a case report. Pediatrics. 2015 Mar;135(3):e726-9.

Picaud JC, Cochat P, Parchoux B, Berthier JC, Gilly J, Chareyre D, Larbre F. Acute renal failure in a child after chewing of match heads. Nephron. 1991;57(2):225-6.

See more: Why Are Some People More Flexible Than Others ? Why Are Some People More Flexible Than Others


keolistravelservices.comed?

contact 1-800-222-1222 or

assist ME virtual

Prevention Tips

keep unlit (and lit!) matches the end of with of children. Discard supplied matches as quickly as that is safe to perform so. Aid keep matches the end of the hand of curious children by to teach them come tell an adult when they discover matches in their setting or in the hand of another child.

This yes, really Happened

The mom of a 16-month-old boy referred to as keolistravelservices.com Control since the boy was found sucking on a whole book of file matches. No matches were lacking from the book. He to be fine and had been given water come drink, however she wanted to recognize if the boy necessary to be taken to an emergency room. keolistravelservices.com control was able to recognize that the boy might be controlled at home. The mother was provided with a perform of possible effects that can occur, such as irritation to the mouth or neck or vomiting. keolistravelservices.com control contacted the mother a couple of hours later to inspect on the boy. The boy did not develop any type of effects, and also an unnecessary expedition to one emergency room to be avoided.