Over-the-Counter Medication Safety for Children

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEven though you can purchase over-the-counter (OTC) drugs without a prescription from a doctor, these medications can be dangerous if taken improperly.

Talk to your child’s doctor before providing any medication for the first time. Read the label on the OTC medication bottle carefully for instructions about what the drug is for, how to use it, ingredients, and reactions to watch out for. Check the label’s chart to determine the correct dosage for your child; if you are unsure, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

If your child has an adverse reaction to an OTC medicine, call the doctor immediately. Throwing up a lot or getting a rash could be signs of an allergy to the medication. Tell the doctor if your child has any side effects with a medicine.

What Not To Do

Never give ibuprofen to an infant under six months of age. Don’t provide acetaminophen or ibuprofen in addition to other OTC drugs unless instructed to do so by your child’s doctor. Never your child with aspirin unless under a doctor’s order.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends not providing children under age six with OTC cough or cold medications.


You can contact the Poison Center at any time at 1-800-222-1222. If you find your child with an open bottle of medicine but no visible reaction, call the Poison Center for advice. Call 911 immediately if your child is passed out and can’t wake up, has trouble breathing, is twitching/shaking out of control, or is acting very odd after possibly taking medication. Do not use syrup of ipecac to make your child throw up. The Poison Center can give you appropriate treatment options depending on the medication.

If your child has an injury related to an OTC medication, contact the Schuerman Law office today. Schuerman Law has been working with personal injury claims for over 40 years. John Schuerman will compassionately advocate for injured individuals as well as their families while fighting for full compensation of their claims. Schuerman Law offers evening and weekend appointments in addition to home and hospital visits. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 1-800-274-0045.