NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - With their swirls and bright colors, bite-sized detergent pods can easily look like candy to children. A new study found the convenience of pods can come at an immeasurable cost. In 2013 and 2014, more than 22,000 detergent pod incidents involved children younger than 6.
Dr. Gary Smith of Nationwide Children's Hospital led the study. He said children have gone into comas, stopped breathing, and two have even died.
He compared toxicity levels between packets and the traditional form of detergent. He found that when children bite down on packets, the chemicals are more concentrated and burst into a child's mouth resulting in more serious medical outcomes, more hospitalizations, and more breathing failures.
Dr. Smith said the concentrated chemicals can cause serious burns, severe damage, and effects on the brain.
In response to the dangers, companies voluntarily made packets harder to puncture and covered them in a film that makes them taste more disgusting. But so far, the companies have resisted changing the colors and making them look less like candies.
Parents we spoke to say that is why they make sure to keeps pods out of children's reach. But experts say that homes with young children should avoid detergent packets altogether.