Riley Leach, with mum Layla and dad David, bit into a Vanish liquid tablet
by Samantha Williams
The parents of a toddler who had to spend three days in hospital after he bit into a washing detergent capsule feared he would go blind in one eye.
Layla Myles, of Leaveland Close, Stanhope, Ashford, thought her son, Riley Leach, would lose sight in the eye when she saw that he had pink gel in it, forcing it shut.
The 30-year-old found Riley screaming in the kitchen when she discovered the 23-month-old had bitten into the Vanish Powershots Gel Cap.
She said: "He had pink stuff in his eye, up his nose, in his mouth and it had dripped onto his stomach.
"His eye had shut within seconds – my first instinct was that he could be blind.
"My partner and I immediately rinsed his eye under the tap, and forced him to drink water in an attempt to flush out the liquid he had already swallowed.
"He was in such a state and he eventually went to sleep, but we continued to dab his eye with a wet tissue."
When Riley showed no sign of improvement the next morning, mum-of-four Layla decided to call her GP who told her to take Riley straight to the accident and emergency department at Ashford's William Harvey hospital.
At A&E, Riley had his eye washed with saline solution and was put on a drip.
He was also given an appointment to see the ophthalmologist – an eye specialist – the next morning.
Riley had to stay at the hospital for three nights before being allowed to go home on Thursday, September 6.
Layla added: "He is very conscious of the marks on his tummy and quite cautious about what he puts in his mouth. He has only just started eating properly again.
"His nose and eyes still aggravate him. I have made an appointment for him to see the doctor today."
Layla and her partner David are still confused as to how Riley got hold of the capsule in the first place.
She said: "The Vanish tabs were on the side in the kitchen, as opposed to their usual spot in the cleaning cupboard, as it was in the process of being cleaned out.
"Riley does like to climb up on the side, but as we were clearing the cupboard we made sure he couldn't climb up.
Layla added: "I definitely won’t be buying them again."
A spokesman for Reckitt Benckiser, the makers of Vanish, said: "We were alerted to this and are obviously very concerned.
"When developing our products we are always looking for formats which are effective, practical, convenient, but above all safe for consumers; and the safety and quality of all our Vanish products is always our primary objective.
"This includes clear user instructions on the pack which should always be followed. As with all household cleaning products these include clear instructions that products of this type should be stored safely and kept away from small children.
"In the case of Vanish Power Shots this warning is clearly on the lid and the box has been designed to make it difficult for children to open.
"We are currently unaware of the details of this particular case, but we take such matters very seriously and will be looking into it."