Baby doesn't want to take medicine: What every parent should do

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Your baby is sick and won’t take her medication. What should you do?

Try not to force-feed her as this makes your baby more agitated and increases the chances of her vomiting afterwards, says Dr Natalie Epton, a specialist paediatrician and neonatologist.

Instead, give her the medicine in a calm manner. Cradle her and gently insert the syringe diagonally into the side of the mouth, allowing the medicine to dribble into the cheek cavity.

Some medication can be mixed with a little juice or milk, and you should check with your doctor or pharmacist first.

Don’t mix it in an entire bottle of milk though, unless specifically instructed to by your doctor. Your baby may not finish the whole bottle, and then you won’t know how much of the medicine she took, Dr Epton adds.

There are devices that help improve the ease of administration. Try the medication dispenser that is shaped like a pacifier (available at leading baby-care stores).

Do ask your doctor if the medication is available as suppositories, which can be inserted into her bottom.

Many parents prefer this – with practice, they can even administer it at night without waking baby up.

Watch our health and wellness video series to learn more about managing common conditions in young kids.

Here’s an episode on what parents must know about fever in babies and toddlers.

This article was first published in Young Parents.