Unfortunately, some babies will need medication to help with a variety of health issues from medication for premature babies to increase blood cell production to full-term babies who need medication for reflux. This article will review some baby medication, give tips for giving medication to your baby, and give you tips on tracking your baby’s medication doses.
Common Baby Medication
– While baby spit up is normal, if there is too stomach acid in the spit-up, it can irritate your baby’s esophagus and your doctor might determine your infant has reflux. If methods to help reflux without medication do not help your baby, your doctor might prescribe medication such as Pepcid and Zantac, which are tolerated well by most babies. Even though they are tolerated well by most babies, this type of medication seems to be prescribed more and more often, so do take care not to allow your doctor to prescribe medication for normal fussiness, which is very common. Most babies will outgrow reflux with or without medication.
– A small percentage of babies (around 20%) are said to have colic if they cry more than three hours per day where the crying is uncontrollable and difficult to soothe. There are various theories on the causes of colic, but it is still unknown what the true cause of colic is. Most people and doctors have said that there is no cure for colic and a baby will just outgrow it around 4 to 5 months of age. Some parents have used gripe water as a medication to help with colic with the thought that colic is caused by an immature digestive system.
– It might start to feel like your baby is teething for two years straight, particularly if your baby is sensitive to pain when the teeth break through the gums. To help your baby (and you) get through the height of teething, sometimes medication can help. Of course, no one wants to give their baby medication every single night, so I always chose to give medication only when it was obvious in the daytime that teeth were really bothering our baby or when it was more difficult than usual for our baby to sleep. Ibuprofen (e.g. Motrin) or Acetaminophen (e.g. Tylenol) can help relieve the teething pain. For a more natural medication, you can try Hyland’s Teething Tablets.
Baby Colds, Coughs and Flu
– When your baby has a cold or the flu, can’t breathe through his nose, has sleep trouble, fussy, and is overall miserable, some parents choose over-the-counter cold and flu medications. In 2008, there was a voluntary recall of all OTC cold & flu infant medication due to many people giving too much medication to their babies. Manufacturers are changing the labels for children under 4 for this reason. Make sure you read about OTC medication safety if you are considering giving your baby cold medicine.
Baby Medication Tracking and Management
For whatever reason you decide to give your baby medication or need to give your baby medication, it’s important to dose it correctly and make sure numerous caretakers don’t give medication too soon. When your baby is taking medication critical to their health, this is, of course, even more important that doses are not missed or that you accidentally overdose your baby. Tracking your baby’s medication can be the difference between life and death when you have a busy home life or if your baby has numerous caretakers to keep up with medication doses. In addition, many new parents are sleep deprived and it’s easy to forget whether it’s been 30 minutes or 2 hours from the last time you gave your baby medication. Many new parents forget to even eat lunch! If you are a working parent, being able to logon to check on your baby’s medicine doses from your computer (or mobile) and know that he is getting all he needs during the day, on time, can give you peace of mind to help you focus on other things at work.
Giving Baby Medication
Here are some tips to help the medicine go down:
• Measure your baby’s medication and then use a syringe or dropper to give it to her. You can let her suck it out of the dropper or place the dropper in the back corner of her mouth and dispense a little at a time.
• Depending on the medication, you can try to put it in some formula or breastmilk, but keep in mind the taste might be altered and some babies won’t like that very much.
We hope this article has helped you feel more confident in giving your baby medication. None of us want to have to give our baby medication, but if we have to, at least there are ways to give us more peace of mind!