Most people use
domestic spoons for measuring liquid medications. But, is it the correct way of
giving medicine to your child or taking it yourself? Health experts say, a
spoon from your silverware drawer should not be used to measure oral liquid
medicine doses. They add that it will lead to serious drug-dosing errors. Incorrect doses (both giving too much and too
little) can be hazardous. Under dosing may not effectively treat an illness and
can lead to medication-resistant infections in case of antibiotics, while overdoses may cause
illness or side effects that can be life threatening.
show that most parents use domestic spoons for the purpose, which leads to
potentially dangerous dosing mistakes. Researchers say, the variations between
the domestic spoon sizes have no relation to the proper calibrated spoons
included in many commercially available children's medicines.
To avoid health
risks, parents are urged to use droppers and syringes (which measure in milliliters) to dispense liquid medication to children. This method is also more
useful if kids are very young or hesitant to take medicine, as a spoon can be
pushed away and the medicine spilt, leaving the parent unsure about how much
the child has actually taken.
medicine syringes are widely available from pharmacists and easy to use. Also,
using them will give parents greater confidence that they have dispensed the
suggest that adults should avoid using domestic spoons for dispensing medication to themselves.
Although adults do not face the same risk levels as children, they are advised
to use properly calibrated spoons or cups if they take any liquid medicine.
People are urged
to read all instructions before taking liquid medication. The instructions will be on the
bottle, on the box or on a paper inside the package. Follow them carefully. You
must check if you need to shake the medicine before taking it.
Also check if
the medicine should be taken on an empty stomach, if the medicine should be
taken with food, and what are the side effects to watch for. It is important
when taking liquid medication that you or your child are sitting up or
standing. Never take medication while lying down. It is possible to choke if
you take medication lying down.