An ordinary teaspoon isn’t accurate enough when it comes to giving your child medicine
Parents – we are being warned not to give our children medicine with a teaspoon because of the risk of overdose, reports the Telegraph.
Basically, the problem lies with how ordinary teaspoons vary from one to another, even in the same household. Some teaspoons hold 2.5ml, others up to 7.3ml. This means the medicine dose we give isn’t always accurate. While there’s a risk of overdose, this also means you could give your child too little.
So what should you do? Firstly, it’s the obvious one: read the label to make sure you know what the right dose is for your child’s age. Secondly, don’t use a standard teaspoon. You need to use the special spoon that comes with the medicine, or buy a plastic syringe or spoon with measurements marked on it.
The US and Greek experts looked at 71 teaspoons and 49 tablespoons gathered from 25 homes. The experts have said that a parent using one of the largest teaspoons would be dosing their child with 192% more medicine than someone using the smallest teaspoon. With the tablespoons they collected, some were twice as big as others.
“Dosing and administering medication to children is different from adults,” said one of the authors of the study, Professor Matthew Falagas, director of the Alfa Institute of Biomedical Sciences in Athens.
''Paediatric dosages need to be adjusted to age and body weight and, as a result, children are considered to be more vulnerable to dosage errors than adults.”
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