Just an FYI. Hundreds of kids around the country are getting sick–sometimes really, really sick–from swallowing those cute laundry packets like Tide Pods and Purex UltraPacks. They’re colorful, smell nice, and are just the right size for a little hand to grab and stuff into his mouth. Something lawyers might refer to as an “attractive nuisance.”

Unfortunately, despite the pretty exterior, those convenient detergent packets can also be dangerous. According to news reports, some kids who have swallowed them have been hospitalized for a week, put on a ventilator, even slipped into a coma.

One of the major problems with these pellets is that they manage to stuff the equivalent of a whole cup of detergent into something small enough to swallow whole. That may explain why doctors are reporting that kids who’ve ingested them are getting sicker faster and more severely than kids who’ve taken a swig of liquid detergent or polished off a few spoonfuls of powder.

Just in case you don’t already have it, the number for poison control (same number no matter where you live) is: 1-800-222-1222.