Table of contents:
- Chemicals in Poisonous Plants and Their Effects on the Body
- How to Overcome the Harmful Effects of Toxic Plants
Poisonous plants often look similar to normal plants and are often considered harmless. However, if accidentally touched, inhaled, or ingested, poisonous plants can pose a hazard to he alth, even endangering a person's life
Many plants are safe for consumption as daily food and are beneficial for he alth. Some plants can even be used as herbal medicines to prevent and treat various diseases.
However, there are also several types of plants that can actually harm he alth and are toxic to the human body, including:
- Poison ivy or nettle (Toxicodendron radicans)
- Poison oak (Toxicodendron diversilobum)
- Amethyst (Datura metel)
- Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum)
- Yellow trumpet flower (Allamanda cathartica)
- Oleander flower (Nerium oleander)
- G ympie-gympie (Dendrocnide moroides)
- castor seed (Ricinus communis L.)
- Sea Onions (Drimia maritima)
- Poisonous mushrooms, such as toadstool (Amanita phalloides) and ghost mushroom (Omphalotus nidiformis)
In addition to the types of plants above, there are many other plants that are thought to have harmful toxins for humans. Therefore, you should not carelessly consume certain plants that have not been proven safe or beneficial.
Chemicals in Poisonous Plants and Their Effects on the Body
There are many chemicals in plants that are the reason why these plants are called poisonous. Some of these poisons are alkaloids, glycosides, arsenic, and urushiol.
These substances are produced by several types of poisonous plants as a form of self-defense from animal attacks that can interfere with their growth. If consumed by humans, these toxic substances can cause a number of dangerous he alth problems.
The following are he alth problems that can be caused by exposure to poisonous plants:
People who are exposed to the substance urushiol in the poisonous plant of nettle, will usually experience an allergic reaction. The reaction occurs due to touching plant parts or objects that have been contaminated with poison, pricked by thorns or plant stems, and inhaling pollen from flowers or smoke from burning these plants.
Exposure to toxic substances on the skin can cause skin itching, redness, blisters, and swelling. This allergic reaction is also known as Toxicodendron dermatitis, which is a type of contact dermatitis due to exposure to plant chemicals from the genus Toxicodendron.
When in contact with the eyes, these chemicals can cause eye irritation and even blindness. If inhaled, it can cause rhinitis and shortness of breath. In severe cases, exposure to this poisonous plant can also lead to potentially life-threatening anaphylactic shock.
The symptoms of poisoning that can appear due to exposure to poisonous plants can vary, depending on the type of poison contained in the plant. Here is the explanation:
1. Alkaloid poisoning
If ingested or ingested, poisonous plants containing alkaloids can cause conditions or symptoms similar to food poisoning.
Symptoms that may appear are severe diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, headache, fainting, hallucinations, and delirium. In severe cases, alkaloid poisoning can even lead to death.
2. Glycoside poisoning
Meanwhile, glycosides in poisonous plants can cause a number of serious problems, such as seizures, hypoxia, stroke, kidney disorders, heart muscle problems, and even cause death. One type of poison that is included in this type of poison is cyanide.
3. Arsenic poisoning
A person can experience arsenic poisoning if he eats poisonous plants or plants contaminated by toxic waste containing arsenic.
Symptoms of arsenic poisoning can include muscle pain, abdominal pain, dizziness, weakness, vomiting, shortness of breath, to chest palpitations.
How to Overcome the Harmful Effects of Toxic Plants
How to deal with the impact of exposure to toxic plants depends on the complaints that arise. If the type of poison is known and an antidote or antidote is available, the antidote must be given as soon as possible.
In general, when someone experiences complaints due to exposure to poisonous plants, the first aid that can be done is:
- Immediately clean the body area affected by poisonous plants with warm water and soap for 20-30 minutes. If it gets into the eyes, rinse immediately with clean water.
- Wash all clothes and objects that may be contaminated.
- Give a cold compress on skin that feels itchy or rashes and blisters appear due to exposure to poisonous plants. To relieve allergy symptoms on the skin, try also using calamine lotion or taking anti-allergic drugs (antihistamines).
- For more severe allergic reactions, you can use corticosteroid drugs prescribed by a doctor.
- Avoid scratching the exposed skin area because it can cause sores on the skin that are at risk of being infected with bacteria.
Usually, mild and moderate complaints due to exposure to poisonous plants only last for 1-3 weeks. If the symptoms don't go away or if they get worse, you need to see a doctor.
However, if after consuming or being exposed to poisonous plants you feel severe symptoms, such as shortness of breath, difficulty swallowing, swollen face, severe diarrhea, nausea and vomiting blood, to weakness, immediately seek help from the emergency room at the nearest hospital..