Widgets Magazine

Sep 22, 2011

A Spoonful of Sugar helps the Medicine go Down

I’m pretty sure I told you that Baby Doll has an ear infection. That’s another sure sign of fall. With all these kids, I rarely go a week in the winter without visiting the doctor for something or another. And Scout managed to get strep, so both girls are on antibiotics. It’s rather amazing to see the difference in their willingness to take their medicine. Baby Doll has no problem at all just chugging down whatever I give her. Maybe that’s because when she was tiny she had reflux, meaning syringes full of medicine every day.

Scout, on the other hand, hates medicine of any kind! I have finally convinced her that vitamin gummies are OK, but it took a while. The only way I can get her to swallow anything is to mask it with root beer or chocolate milk. And then I still have to threaten her with stuff I probably wouldn’t do (I can say that because she can’t really read yet). Like yesterday, even though I mixed her medicine into chocolate milk, she messed around for half an hour pretending to drink it. Finally it was time for her to leave for school. I told her that if she didn’t drink the entire cup by the time we got to the school, I wasn’t going to let her get out of the van. Three minutes later we pulled up in front of the school. She gave me a look and finally drained her cup.

She isn’t my only child with issues. I’m still not sure the Drama Queen (at age 22) can swallow a pill, and I know Prima Donna can’t. I have personally witnessed her chewing up an Ibuprofen caplet or spreading the powder from an antibiotic capsule over a tablespoon of applesauce.

But my very worst was Crafty. Even as a tiny girl, her gag reflex was so bad that any kind of medicine would just come right back up. (She even puked on the dentist once, but that's another story.) Mixing with root beer or chocolate milk didn’t help either (except that she now has a healthy hatred for chocolate milk!).

When she was three or four, she got a cold. It wasn’t long before that cold had settled in her ears. She was ornery and miserable, but refused Tylenol. I finally took her to the doctor and she confirmed a double ear infection, complete with antibiotics and numbing drops for her ears. Getting the Amoxicillin down her was brutal and even though we wedged the syringe between her teeth, she managed to gag until she brought it all back up. We were tired and frustrated, but we still hoped the numbing drops might help us get a little sleep.

My sweetie grabbed the cotton balls and the tiny bottle. As I tried to hold her in a semi-comfortable position, Crafty screamed and thrashed and pulled away. My sweetie broke the cotton ball and unscrewed the cap on the drops. As soon as he approached her ear with the bottle, sweet little Crafty started choking and gagging. Somehow she had it in her mind that she could force those drops back out of her ears…maybe we should have named HER the Drama Queen. PS I would love it if you have tips to share on how you get your kids to take the meds. I don’t think this problem is going to go away anytime soon!

PPS I guess I shouldn't have brought up the nasty phone call. It was from some random dad who also has a scout who just completed all the merit badges. He was angry with me because Nate's story is all over the web and his son's isn't. There are 153 confirmed cases of scouts who have all achieved this goal throughout the hundred years of scouting. Nate is the only one that I know of who is autistic. We are just hoping that he can inspire some of these kids with disabilities to work a little harder. In his words..."Stop slacking and get on with it!"


M-Cat said...

Been catching up around here - my you have been busy!! Happy Birthday to Dady - Congrats to DogWalker (that is seriously AMAZEING!!) and now sick kiddos! I am always in awe of how you do it all!

Mrs.Spy said...

My boys were beasts about medicine,it was a happy day here when they all could just take a pill.
My daughter never had any problems with medicine and as fate would have it, she was almost never sick outside of a cold here and there.
Hope your wee ones feel better soon!

Tracie said...

Sick kids are no fun, I don't have any suggestions on how to get them to take it but working in a Dr's office I would suggest your girls who crush pills or break them check with the pharmacist or Dr to make sure it is okay. Some medications can be very dangerous is crushed or broken. And as far as that Dad goes he was out of line, way out of line. What you son did was Amazing and he deserves all the praise he has been given.

GrumpyJaxMomOf3 said...

My kids also have a hatred for medicine. My oldest absolutely refuses any kind of medicine.... until our doctor (who is also a bishop in our stake) told her that if she didn't start taking her medicine like a "big girl" He would gladly get it in a "shot" form and make her take a shot every day. She quickly learned how to swallow a pill and is now a champ!! Threats do work hehehe

Anonymous said...

Our daughter when she was little refused everything the Kaiser Pedatrician fixed that by telling her she would get a banana split if she took pills, amoxycillin liquid, I thought okay, I made the banana split up and she ate the pills and moxycillin(she called it that) never had anymore problems, I was worried over the sugar and gradually took to making tiny banana splits and she was a-okay..She is now 34 still hates pills, etc. but always treats herself to a tiny sundae after she takes all her pills etc..It really worked, lie to kids they won't ever take another pill in their life, promise something really yummy deliver it promptly(tiny sizes) and they will be great about it..our daughter is 5 feet 6 inches about 100 pounds dripping wet and strong and healthy..go figure I am about 5 feet 2 inches and I won't tell my weight and can't eat much at all type 2 diabetes got to me, all I do is walk and eat veggies, salmon and spinach now..lots of tea too..but sweets no way jose as they say!

Beth said...

Can't believe someone would be angry at your son for getting attention for achievements. Some people are just so egotistical. As for medicine, my husband has to hold his head down and we just put it in his mouth. I am sure if he could induce vomit, he would. Its not pretty, but parenthood rarely is. Hugs!

Rachna said...


Really! Hats off to you being a mom of twelve. I crib so much with just 2 sons. I have a lot of respect for you. It is always quite traumatic when the kids fall sick -- getting them to have their medicine and making them eat are the toughest tasks then. Hope your kids get well soon.

Katie said...

Sorry to hear you have sick kiddos too! I have no help for getting them to take medicine though...my kids seem to think its like candy and get excited for it (which isn't so good either, they have perfected a fake cough and ask for medicine).

K said...

Getting kids to take medicine is always a challenge. Good luck!

(Reading that you have 12 kids make me feel like a bit of wimp after my last post. I'm a amazed!)

Anita said...

Yay for Nate. That's amazing.
Do not publish your phone number anywhere if you're a blogger!!
Your baby doll is so adorable. I wish I could capture her!!

LOVE MELISSA:) said...

My daughter hates taking medicine too. I try to mix it in with other stuff to hide the taste. She is very sensitive to any medicine tastes, so I have to do a good job covering it up.


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