The Parent-Teacher-Child Connection: How to get your kids to take medicine

Thursday, February 16, 2012

How to get your kids to take medicine

Some children take the bubble-gum or grape-flavored medicine with no trouble, perhaps too eagerly.  You may worry that he'll find the refrigerated bottle somehow and chug it down.  Other parents beg, plead, bribe, and use the pinched nose routine to get medicine into their children.  Here are a few tried and true ways that don't involve brute force to get medicine into your kids...
  • The bitter taste buds are in the back of the mouth.  Take the dropper and place the medicine in his cheek, rather than on his tongue.  He'll be less likely to taste it and subsequently reject it.
  • Place the medicine in food - applesauce, ice cream, yogurt - anything soft that will disguise the taste. However, don't use too much because your child must eat everything in the bowl to get all the medicine.
  • If your child uses a pacifier, invest in the Kidz Med Pacifier Medicine Dispenser or Safety 1st Hospital's Choice Bottle Medicine Dispenser, depending on your child's nipple preference.
  • If your child is old enough ask your doctor for the chewable variety rather than the liquid.  Your child may think it's simply another vitamin.
  • Bribery works!  Offer a sticker or some other incentive for taking the medicine.  Create a medicine chart and when the ten days are up, the child can get a "prize" for taking all her medicine.
  • Use a positive attitude - if you wrinkle your nose at the medicine, it's a safe bet that your child is picking up on your attitude.  Be cheerful and happy, even taking a sip of something similar to show your child it's okay to take medicine.
  • Try different flavors.  Most pharmacies have an assortment of flavor supplements for liquid medicines.  If your child doesn't like cherry, he might prefer grape or peppermint. 
  • As an alternative, try spraying your child's mouth with Yo Gabba Gabba! Medicine-Time Flavor Spray  before and after he takes the medicine to mask the flavor.
Happy Parenting!

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