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Poison Center Helpline 1-800-222-1222

If the child swallowed more than one mouthful, is having symptoms, or if you are not positive of the exact substance or amount swallowed, call the Poison Center Hotline immediately at 800-222-1222. The call is free and confidential.

Pencil Lead

Also Known As:

Graphite, pencils

pencil lead

Toxicity Level

Usually Nontoxic

Possible Symptoms

Ingestion of graphite or other pencil material is not expected to produce symptoms. A child could choke on a small piece of pencil that has been broken or bitten off. If your child is choking, call 911.

What To Do

Give the child a few sips of water. Any graphite that has been drawn on the skin should wash away easily with soap and water. Call IPC if your child has any symptoms.

Poison Information

Toxicity Level

Usually Nontoxic

Also Known As

Graphite, pencils

What It Is

Pencil Lead is actually graphite, a minimally-toxic carbon-based substance. Pencils do not contain the metal lead.

Possible Symptoms of Overdose/Poisoning

Ingestion of graphite or other pencil material is not expected to produce symptoms. A child could choke on a small piece of pencil that has been broken or bitten off. If your child is choking, call 911.

What To Do

Give the child a few sips of water. Any graphite that has been drawn on the skin should wash away easily with soap and water. Call IPC if your child has any symptoms.

Toxicity

Graphite and other components of a pencil are minimally toxic when swallowed or drawn onto the skin. If a pencil tip breaks or punctures the skin, contact IPC at 1-800-222-1222 or the child’s pediatrician for medical advice regarding the puncture injury.

Eye Exposure

If your child has gotten this substance in his or her eyes, please view our eye exposure information.

 

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