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I’ve been there. Crying, sick kid, with a stuffy nose, and all you want is to make it better for them.
That’s the time when you don’t want to fight with them you just want to make it better, and sometimes it’s hard to convince them to take their meds. But, don’t worry because these are some of my favorite ways to get a kid to take medicine.
20 Super Sneaky Ways To Get a Kid To Take Medicine
- Syringe. If you’re doing liquid medicine, you can usually get it down fast or in little bits.
- Spoon. Some kids just don’t like the syringe. Try a spoon, then. Spoons seem “normal” to kids since they use them to eat.
- Chilled. Sometimes, just popping the medicine in the fridge for a little while before giving it to your kid can make all the difference. Think about a warm glass of water vs. a cold one–which goes down smoother?
- REALLY Chilled. My pediatrician said there’s usually nothing wrong with making a little popsicle or slushie out of a medicine.
- Get medicine that tastes good. Yeah, they totally make it. Some taste like chocolate while others taste fruity. You can find medicine like this at pretty much any store like Walmart or Target.
- Lick of Ice. Ice can shut off the taste buds somewhat, so a lick of ice before and after taking the meds can help a kid cope with any blegh.
- Happy. This may be difficult at 3am, but if you can be smiling and joking about the medicine, and not tense and worried if she’ll take it, your child will be a lot more receptive.
- Puff. This is a trick the nurse at my doctor’s office used to get my daughter to take medicine one time–the nurse blew a little puff in her face right after putting the medicine in her mouth with the dropper. Apparently, this gets kids to swallow.
- Bribe. Look, sometimes it’s late and you just want to get the meds down and go to bed. Sometimes you have to stoop to bribing. I am okay with that.
- Sneak. If you can stash a chewable pill in a snack, this is a super-easy trick to avoid the fighting!
- Game. A simple way to get a child to take medicine is to turn it into a game by maybe making up three spoons or syringes (one with juice, one with meds and one with water) and asking them to drink each to tell you which is the medicine.
- Show-off. This can be a really simple: “Show daddy (or the dog) how a big girl takes her medicine.”
- Juice. I’ve even gone so far as to inject meds into a juice box. Nuts, but it worked!
- Suppository. Sounds horrible, but sometimes it’s necessary, and less of an issue.
- Medicine for Stuffie. What if pony (or puppy, or dolly) took the medicine first?
- TV. I’m not a huge fan of putting my kid in front of a TV, but since it’s such a distraction, if you can get them to watch a little television and while they’re doing that, you can get them to take the meds without them ever realizing!
- Man-up. Just telling your toddler about big girls and boys sometimes does the trick.
- Daddy Does It. Have dad mime what taking the meds looks like. Easy peasy.
- Control Issues. Sometimes, kiddos just want to be in control. Let them hold the spoon or cup or whatever.
- After-Party. Dance, dance, dance with joy when she takes the meds and next time, she’ll remember the after-party, instead of the fight!