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Over-the-Counter Medication Pointers

Common medications can have serious consequences if taken incorrectly.


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over-the-counter medicationNo parent relishes the idea of having to give their child medication, but sometimes over-the-counter (OTC) pain medicines can provide relief for children suffering from fever or pain. 

Some pain medications are perfectly safe for even young children, if used only occasionally. However, know that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) very clearly advises that infants and children under the age of 2 should never be administered OTC cough and cold products such as decongestants, expectorants, antihistamines, and cough suppressants due to serious and potentially life-threatening side effects can occur. 

The two main types of OTC pain relievers for children are ibuprofen and acetaminophen. Ibuprofen is marketed under names like Advil and Motrin, and most of us recognize acetaminophen as Tylenol. Children and teens should not be given aspirin because of its link to Reyes syndrome, a rare condition that causes swelling in the liver and brain.

Even common medications can have serious consequences when taken incorrectly. 

Follow the tips on the next page from the FDA and manufacturers of over-the-counter medications when giving pain medication to children—>

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