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Cold Medications Are Bad for Babies

Baby Wellness: Cold Meds Go Bye–Bye

When my baby was sick last month, I was tempted to buy Dimetapp to give her some relief from her nasty cold. My mom and mother–in–law both said they had given it to my husband and me growing up, but that I should ask a doctor before administering it.

I'm glad I listened to them as the doctor told me not to use any cold medication. And just recently, the FDA said,

“Over-the-counter (OTC) cough and cold products should not be used to treat infants and children less than 2 years of age because serious and potentially life-threatening side effects can occur from such use.”

The FDA has reported rare cases of death, convulsions and rapid heart rates in children who consumed the medications. And, it turns out that using the over–the–counter drugs may not even provide any sort of relief.

While we are still in the middle of the cold season, it's important to let parents know that what works for us may not work for our babes. So ask the professionals what to do if your tot is ill. It seems like this might be a case where doctor knows best, not mama.

Join The Conversation
Greggie Greggie 9 years
And just to clarify, my "I'm ticked" statement wasn't directed at lilsugar or the story itself. It's that there's no OTC meds available for kids under 6, even though the recommendation is no meds for kids under 2. The story itself, I think is great information and needs to be known.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
My older son is prone to ear and eye infections if we don't relieve the congestion ASAP. Now sometimes we can accomplish that with saline and stuff. Sometimes his eyes are already draining, and that's when I go straight for medical help. It's MUCH easier than trying to treat the infections a few days later.
Jennifer777 Jennifer777 9 years
The most important thing is to dose appropriately AFTER consulting with your doctor. And I am with Novarean...too many active ingrediants equals trouble... Why would you want your child to be utterly miserable when even a little relief could be had? Do you go through a cold without any help?
Greggie Greggie 9 years
I agree with Novarean - no multiple symptom ones. I've used decongestants with both my kids, long before the age of 6, which is what the OTC ones now are. I'm ticked. Of course I use home remedies first, but sometimes a medication is indicated. I've always used them with strict input from the doctor regarding both symptoms and taking their weight into account, not age. And they're rarely used, but it was nice to know they were an option.
Novaraen Novaraen 9 years
I recently took both my 2 year old sons into the doctor because they had nasty colds. After the doc checked them over, he told me to just give them dimetapp(same one pictured)...1 tsp, every 6 hours. It worked like a DREAM!! What i can say about giving young children anything OTC is to stay away from things with multiple ingredients. When one of my boys was around 1 to 1-1/2 or so...i gave him a small amount of a tylenol childrens cold medicine that had about 3 active ingredients. Afterwards, he flipped out and began acting totally irrational and cried and cried. Well..we took him to the hospital and they said he would be fine but that i should stay away from giving them multi-ingredient medicines. I definitely learned my lesson!
LiLRuck44 LiLRuck44 9 years
I trust my own mommy-medic skills way more than I would trust any doctor. I would never give my children (9,2, and 1) any sort of medicine for something as simple as an awful cold. There are dozens of remedies to make our little ones feel better, that don't cause a risk of death and actually make a difference!
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