What Medicine Can I Give To My Baby?

What can I do if my baby is sick?


If your little one is sick it can be a worrying time. It’s difficult to see your baby feeling so uncomfortable and unwell, and you’ll be searching for something that can help to nurse them back to health.


But what medicines can your baby take? With all of the options out there, it can be difficult to work out which ones are right for your little one when they’re feeling under the weather.


Well, to make your life easier we’re going to take a look at some of the most common illnesses your baby could be suffering from and what you can give them to help make it all better.


What cough medicines can I give to my baby?


Normally, if your baby has a cough it isn’t anything to worry about, but it can be upsetting to hear your little one coughing.


This is when you may want to look for a cough medicine that will help your little one to get rid of their troublesome cough, but which ones can be used by babies?


Our favourite cough medicine for babies is Tixylix Baby syrup, which is designed to help to clear a dry and tickly cough.


The best thing about this product is that it can be taken by infants as young as 3 months old, meaning that it can help even very young babies when other medicines cannot.


If your little one is over a year old, another great option is Calcough children’s cough syrup, which helps to clear dry, tickly coughs while also soothing sore throats.

What cold medicines can I give to my baby?

Sadly, most over the counter cold medicines aren’t suitable for infants, with most only being suitable for children aged six or over.


However, there are a couple of things you can do to ease your infant’s cold.


If your baby is suffering with a blocked nose, you might want to use a saline drops or saline spray, like Calpol Saline Nasal Spray or Snufflebabe Nasal Drops, to ease congestion.


These saline solutions help to loosen dried snot in your baby’s nose, helping to clear their nose. Most saline solutions can be used from birth, so make sure to ask your Chemist 4 U pharmacist or other health worker about them.

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Some babies can suffer with pain, discomfort, or a fever when fighting off a cold, so you may need to use a pain killer to help to ease their pain.


As an adult, we would normally reach for ibuprofen or paracetamol as a quick and easy pain relief, and you’ll be glad to know that infants as young as 2 months old can use these pain relief medications too, although you may know them under another name.


Some of the most popular pain relief medicines for little ones are Calpol and Nurofen, which both contain popular pain relief medications.


Calpol usually contains paracetamol, whereas Nurofen contains ibuprofen.


These branded products are both great, but if you’re on a budget, you may consider picking up regular paracetamol oral suspensions (liquid medicines) or sachets, which can also be suitable for infants.


No matter which pain relief product you pick for your little one, remember to always check the patient information leaflet which come with these products.


This will help you to be sure that they’re suitable for your baby and that you’re giving them the right dosage of their medicine.

Are there any home remedies for coughs and colds that I can give to my baby?


Some people may worry about giving medicine to their child or may wonder if there are any natural remedies they can use to help to relieve their little one’s coughs and colds.


If your little one is older than 1, you might want to try a soothing honey and lemon drink.


A nice warm drink with a few teaspoons of honey and lemon isn’t just tasty, but it will help to soothe their throat and ease a cough.


Just be sure to check the temperature of the drink before giving it to your toddler, you wouldn’t want it to be too hot.


If your little one is struggling with a blocked nose that is keeping them awake at night, you might want to consider a vapour plug in, like the Calpol vapour plug in and nightlight.


This can be used if your baby is over three months old and contains a blend of non-medicated aromatic oils, including lavender and chamomile.


These are released into the air while your infant sleeps, helping your little one to breathe more easily.

What medicines can I give to my baby for vomiting?


Normally, vomiting is completely normal for babies, and isn’t a sign of a serious medical problem. However, sometimes vomiting can be a sign of another illness or condition, such as gastroenteritis or a food allergy.


If you think your little one’s vomiting is more serious than normal, always speak to your doctor or health care worker as soon as you can.


They will be able to help and your doctor will be able to prescribe any medication your infant may need to help them to get better.


There aren’t any over the counter medications that should be given to children who are vomiting without being diagnosed by a doctor first.


However, if your little one is vomiting there is one very important thing you can do to help them to feel better and that is to ensure that they stay hydrated.


Vomiting can make your infant become dehydrated if not properly monitored, so make sure to carry on breast or bottle feeding and provide extra fluids if they seem dehydrated.


Some doctors may prescribe an oral rehydration solution for babies suffering with dehydration, so make sure to speak to your doctor if you’re worried about your little one getting enough fluids.



Can I mix medicine with my baby’s milk to get them to take it?


It can be difficult to get babies to take medicine sometimes, leaving parents of young infants wondering how they can get their baby to take the medicines they need.


Some parents in this situation may have wondered if they can mix baby’s medication in with their milk, so their little one can get their medicine without even knowing it.


Unfortunately, mixing baby’s medicine in with their milk is a bad idea. If you mix the medicine your little one needs in with their milk, then there’s a chance that they won’t get the full amount of medicine they need.


For example, your baby could become full before finishing their bottle, leaving part of their dose in their bottle.


This can make it difficult to judge how much medicine your baby has actually had and could lead to them not getting enough medicine to treat their illness.


Luckily, there is an easier and safer way to get your infant to take their medicine.



How can I get my baby to take their medicine?


The simplest way to give your baby or young child medicine is to use something called an oral syringe.


This helps you to measure the small dosage of medicine your little one will need accurately so you can push it into your child’s mouth bit by bit.


You can get oral syringes from chemists and pharmacies, and most medicines designed for babies will even include an oral syringe as well as a measuring spoon.


Oral syringes can be cleaned and sterilised, so you can use it whenever your little one needs to take medicine.


To use an oral syringe for your baby, just draw up a little of the medicine into the syringe, checking the measuring gauge on the side of the syringe to be sure you’ve drawn up the right amount, as specified in the medicine’s information leaflet.


Then, put the end of the syringe into your child’s mouth and press the plunger to push a little of the medicine into their mouth.


Aim for the space between your infant’s cheek and gums, and do not push the full dosage of the medicine into your little one’s mouth at once – they could choke if given too much medicine at once.


Push the medicine into their mouth little by little, giving your infant a little time to swallow the medicine in between. When you’ve given your baby their full dosage, remove the syringe and clean it thoroughly, so it can be used again.


If you like, you can now give your little one a drink of milk or juice to wash the taste of the medicine away, providing this does not go against the instructions contained in the medicine’s information leaflet.



Now we know all about what medicines we can give to our little ones and the easiest way to make sure that they get the medicine they need when they’re unwell.


If you’re ever worried about your little one and need more information about what you can do to make them feel better, why not give our Chemist 4 U pharmacy team a call?


They’ll be able to answer all of your questions and give you some great advice so you can be sure that you’re doing the best thing for your child, always.

Laura Henderson - Medical Content Writer
James O'Loan - CEO & Superintendent Pharmacist
James O'Loan , CEO & Superintendent Pharmacist on 22 September 2021
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