Babies and toddlers are notorious for two things…being cute as heck and getting sick. It’s unavoidable. So, no matter how many antibacterial wipes you invest in, how many times you tell them not to eat floor food, or how many times you double boil every pacifier, they’re going to get sick. Inevitably, you’ll make a 1 a.m. trip to the pharmacy or beg your pediatrician for the first available appointment. But it’s nothing a few late nights rocking your sick baby back to sleep, a few puke-stained white t-shirts (always on the white tee), a few hundred temperature checks, and a 10-day stint of antibiotics can’t fix! Piece of cake, right?
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Have you ever tasted that nasty, chalky, white medication that’s supposed to cure whatever ails ya? It’s disgusting! No wonder every t-shirt I own is stained from the regurgitation of whatever he was eating right before I tried to squirt the medicine down his throat. I might as well just give him the meds without a shirt on (me or him), it would probably cut my laundry load in half. Why can’t they just make antibiotics taste like Infant Tylenol, my son gladly gobbles that medicine up no problem. What is it about antibiotics?
So, after what feels like an hour of begging and pleading for my sweet, sick boy to take this “magical healing syrup”, I’ve now also wasted half the bottle of this liquid hell. And forget about calling the pediatrician for a refill 2 days after I originally got it. They act like I’m trying to overdose my kid or sell it on streets for a pretty penny.
I had to think of something. A way to get the medication down (and stay down) so that he would not only feel better but also so my pediatrician wouldn’t think I was a drug dealer!
I researched a ton of parenting medication hacks online, including pacifier medication holders, parents who have sugar-coated the medicine, tried to hide it in yogurts, ice cream, and milkshakes to no avail. Some ask the pharmacist to “flavor” the antibiotics. Ha! Doesn’t work, in fact, I think it makes it taste worse.
Then one day, by accident, I discovered something that would change the way I give my 20-month-old son nasty tasting antibiotics. Behold the cheese Ritz bits cracker.
The trick is to offer the Ritz bits cracker like nothing is going on. Just a normal day. Normal snack. Remember nothing is going on. While your tot is chewing away on this delicious fake cheese and cracker snack, sneak up behind him and squirt the medicine in their mouth! Viola! No spit up, no throw-up, no screaming, kicking, or crying!
It doesn’t have to be a Ritz cracker, any starchy snack that disguises the taste is sure to get the job done.
Sometimes you might not be able to get the full amount of medicine in on the first squirt, that’s okay. Offer another cracker and then finish the medication. Try to keep it to one or two squirts or your tot might start to get suspicious and you’ll be made.
Don’t expect this to work forever. Just because it works on my 20-month-old son doesn’t mean it will work on your 4-year-old. But if you’re tired of arm wrestling your child to take his medication, it’s worth a shot.
Good Luck Mommy and Daddy, may the force be with you.
Related Post: 5 Tricks to Navigating the Dreaded Teething Years.
Do you have medication giving tricks up your sleeve? Did you try mine? How did it work? Share your experience in the comments below.
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