This is breaking news so I hope all moms will read this blog. Whatever you do don’t give over-the-counter cold remedies to kids under four years of age. It is dangerous for them. All you should really do is just try and keep the child warm, calm and comfortable.
Two big drug companies that make over the counter cold and flu remedies like Pediacare and Dimetapp announced that the ingredients in these cold medicines can affect kids in an adverse way. They have also been especially warned about not giving kids antihistamines to help them sleep. In fact in newer drug packaging there is new instructions telling you that these types of medications are definitely not for children under the age of four.
In 2007 a similar revamp of dosing recommendations took place when the cold and flu medicine manufacturers produced instructions that said that this medication should not be given to children under the age of two. However here is something that you should also know. Pediatricians actually petitioned the FDA to ban medications like these for kids under age six. So if you have a child under six years old then you might want to consider this because it is common knowledge that the FDA tends to serve the interests of the drug companies. It is interesting that once again they did not follow the recommendations of pediatricians. However you can make the choice of following those recommendations and not putting your child at risk.
The reason pediatricians asked for this is because there is no evidence that these products work for kids under six years of age but there is definitely evidence that these medicines cause side effetsin large kids. The side effects include hives, drowsiness and unsteady walking. Over seven thousand kids a year end up in U.S. hospitals after overdosing accidentally or on purpose on these medicines. Most of these kids were curious toddlers who drank the medicines.
Part of the logic of kind of banning it for children under six was all about reducing the risk of overdose as well. If the stuff is not around the home the kids are less likely to grab it and ingest it.
Many doctors say you should not give these remedies to older children either. They could be doing more harm than good. However the drug manufacturers said they are also introducing new child proof caps and spouts so that it is more difficult for these children to have an overdose.
Leading cough and cold brands include Dimetapp, Pediacare, Robitussin, Triaminic, Little Colds and versions of Tylenol that have ingredients to treat cold symptoms. To be on the safe side I am going to avoid giving my kids these medications for now.