No one likes being sick, especially infants and young children who cannot tell how they feel when they are sick. When your little one gets sick, not only do you have to figure out what is wrong, you have to determine which medicines are safe to give them and which ones are not. This can be a challenge as almost every medication has an age range and a lot of what is on the market can be unsafe for babies. Here are some options that are safe and can bring some relief to everyone.
Do not ever give an infant aspirin unless a doctor approves and recommends its usage. Aspirin is very dangerous to a child with a viral infection as it can lead to a serious condition called Reye’s syndrome. Aspirin-free pain/fever relievers such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen can be given to infants as young as three and six months. Do not give these medications to a younger child without first consulting your doctor. Please understand that you must administer the correct dose for your child which is based on weight. According to www.babycenter.com, the dosage charts run approximately 6-11 pounds, 12-17 pounds, 18-23 pounds. 24-35 pounds, 36-47 pounds, 48-59 pounds, 60-71 pounds, 72-95 pounds, and 96 plus pounds. The best way to administer these liquid medications is with a marked syringe that offers precise dosages. And be sure that you do not confuse children’s liquid medications with infant drops as the drops are much more concentrated and usually come with a syringe. Cold medications, which can be very tricky, are not recommended for children younger than 2.
Some medicines are simply too dangerous to administer to a child under three months old, but children this young do get sick. There are some non-medical remedies that can help to relieve illness while being completely safe for your child. Steamy air created by a humidifier, cool-mist vaporizer, or even a steamy bathroom can help some cold and flu symptoms. Saline drops and bulb syringes can provide relieve when a child is too young to blow their nose. Vapor rubs made specifically for infants 3 months or older can provide a cooling sensation in the nose that gives the sensation of breathing easier and you can even make your own. Plenty of fluids, especially warm fluids, can help flush out your baby’s system. Soup, tea, and apple juice are all good options but the best choice is warm chicken broth. This multi-tasker has been proven to relieve symptoms like aches, fatigue, congestion, and even fevers. Honey coats and soothes the throat and helps to calm a cough. Try putting it in a natural tea your doctor has approved for a double dose of treatment.
Perhaps the best treatment for a sick infant is plenty of rest and sleep, especially if your child is too young for any medication at all. Most illnesses run their course anywhere from two to ten days and the best thing you can do is just let your child rest and sleep as much as possible. When your child is resting they are healing as it takes energy to fight an infection.
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