Fish face. Prep up baby’s mouth by gently squeezing the sides of her cheeks so her mouth is pursed with just enough open space for you to administer the medicine. Hold this position for a few seconds until the medicine goes down.
Arlin delos Angeles, M.D., a pediatrician at St. Luke’s hospital, adds that when applying this technique, the adult should make sure to insert the medicine between the gums and the cheek. “This way the medicine will not spill out,” she explains.
Nose pinch. “I usually resort to pinching his nose until the mouth opens, giving me time to administer the medicine,” shares Gayette Galsim, a nurse and mother to Nico, Ian,and Ally.
Dr. Delos Angeles agrees. “This should be done briefly. Also, pinching the nose prevents baby from smelling the medicine. Part of taste is aroma—and some babies are repelled by the smell of meds,” she explains.
Keep the medicine cold.
Choose the right tools. Galsim keeps a supply of dosage droppers, oral syringes, and dosage cups, which they use whenever their little ones need a dose of medicine. Galsim cautions against using teaspoons. “I am very particular about not using silverware and kitchen spoons to hold the medicine,” she says. “Teaspoon size varies from household to household—you cannot get the exact measurement unless you use a tool that has markers to aid you in administering the exact dosage,” she explains.
Dr. Delos Angeles also stresses the importance of using appropriate tools, “It is always best to use tools that come with the medicine itself or tools that are designed for the specific purpose of administering medicine to a baby.” She adds, “When I prescribe medication, I make sure to indicate the exact amount to be administered each time. If you use a syringe or any other type of tool that is calibrated, you get the exact measurement each time.”
Ask for yummier alternatives. “You can ask your baby’s doctor to prescribe medicine that has a more pleasant taste,” advises Dr. delos Angeles. “I always make it a point to taste the medicine I recommend so I will have an idea which ones are more appealing to kids—‘yung masarap, those are what I prescribe,” she explains. Sucgang finds it easier to give kids flavored or good tasting medicine. “When my youngest Rebecca was still a baby, there were certain medicines that she actually liked because of the taste,” she shares. “Sometimes she would already open her mouth when she sees me holding the bottle. The baby is more cooperative if she knows she’s in for a tasty treat.” Dr. Delos Angeles also disapproves of mixing the medicine with milk. “Even if there are no yummy alternatives, the baby should get used to the taste of medicine.”
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Photography by Jun Pinzon
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