Infants’ Tylenol Being Updated, Plus Tips on Giving Medicine to Kids
In light of last week’s acetaminophen news, Parents spoke to Dr. Edward Kuffner, M.D., Vice President, OTC Medical Affairs & Clinical Research for McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the makers of Tylenol. Tylenol, part of Johnson & Johnson, is already in the process of making changes to their infants’ and children’s products, says Kuffner.
Along with other OTC medicine manufacturers, Tylenol will be standardizing the acetaminophen doses for infants and children. Currently, Tylenol has removed their infants’ medication from store shelves so only children’s medication is available, but they will still remain separate products. This means infants’ medication will be back in stores in time for the upcoming cold and flu season.
Formulas are also remaining the same, but bottles and dosing equipment will be updated. Infants’ and Children’s liquid Tylenol will have enhanced bottles with flow restrictors that will prevent spilling, provide ease of dispensing, and stop kids from drinking out of the bottle easily. Infants’ Tylenol will also have a new dosing device, a clearly-marked syringe that will provide accurate dosing and administration. Children’s Tylenol will still include a clearly-marked cup.
Right now, all OTC (not just Tylenol) infants’ and children’s medication do not include proper dosing information for children under 2. Instead, labels instruct parents to consult pediatricians. Tylenol is also working with the FDA to change this to include proper dosing instructions for children 6 months and up. Parents with children under 6 months should still consult pediatricians.
Tylenol also has these helpful tips, formed from the acronym NURSE, for giving medicines to infants and children:
Never give adult medicines to children.
Use the measuring device (syringe, dropper, dosage cup) that comes with the medicine every time you use it. Don’t use kitchen spoons (teaspoons or tablespoons).
Read and follow instructions on the label. Never give more than the recommended dose and do not give the medication more frequently than recommended.
Store all medicines out of the reach of children. Immediately following use, always restore the child resistant cap and put the medicine back into a high and out of sight location.
Every child grows. Know the infant’s or child’s weight and/or age to help determine the appropriate dosage.
Dr. Kuffner says it’s always best to dose according to your child’s weight instead of age, since it’s more accurate. If you don’t know your child’s weight, dose by age or consult a doctor.