If All Else Fails
What if your baby just won't take his medicine? These are the next steps:
- If your baby is over a year old, try this squirm-free position. Place a syringe filled with the right amount of medicine on a table next to you. Hold your child on your lap, facing you, with her legs on either side of your body, and lean her back on your knees. Her head should fall over the ends of your knees, slightly lower than her body. Use both arms to push hers out of the way, and then support her head with one hand. With the other hand, insert the syringe in between her cheek and teeth, and squirt in a small amount of the medicine while you gently blow on her face. With her head lower than her body and the distraction of your blowing, she'll tend to swallow as a reflex. Continue until the syringe is empty.
- Talk to your doctor. She can select a more-concentrated form of the medicine so you'll need to give fewer doses or smaller amounts each time. She can also try to prescribe better-tasting medicines.
- Mix the medicine with juice or food. But first ask your doctor if that's okay; some drugs lose their potency when combined with food. Use only a small amount of applesauce or grape juice so you can be sure your child has consumed all the medicine.
- If she's old enough to talk, give your child a choice of how she wants to take her medicine. She can pick dropper, spoon, or medicine cup. Sometimes having a little control makes kids more cooperative.
Originally published on AmericanBaby.com, December 2001.
All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.