If you have questions about your child’s health, ask your pharmacist! Your pharmacist is your medication expert and can provide advice and information on a wide range of health issues. Your pharmacist is always available to answer questions and help you find ways to make your child more comfortable when he or she is not feeling well or has to take medicine.
Your pharmacist can provide you with the following services:
- Pharmacists are trained to assess your child’s symptoms and determine if he/she should be seen by a physician or other health professional. If you are unsure of whether or not to take your child to the doctor, your pharmacist can help you decide
- Ensure that the medication the doctor prescribed is the appropriate drug, the correct dosage, and proper duration to ensure optimal effectiveness
- Provide you with information on medications (prescription and over-the-counter), natural health products, vitamins, and other health related products so that they are used correctly
- Teach you how to properly administer medications to your children
As a parent you can help your pharmacist help your child by:
- When possible, using only one pharmacy. This helps to ensure that all information on file is up to date and can prevent serious medication errors. When you build a relationship with a pharmacist over time, the pharmacist is better able to care for your family.
- Telling your pharmacist about all the medications, vitamins, and herbal products your child uses
- Alerting the pharmacist to any allergies or medical conditions your child has
- Knowing and informing your pharmacist of what condition the doctor is treating
- Knowing your child’s current weight, as medications are dosed based on weight in infants and children.
- Asking questions. Never assume anything when it comes to medications and your child, and never leave the pharmacy with questions about your child’s medicine. If you forget something, call when you arrive at home.
Important tips for administering medication to your child:
- Always administer medication based on weight, NOT age. Weight based dosing is the most accurate and preferred method. Know your child’s current weight and inform your pharmacist.
- Write down the name of the child, time, and which medication you have given. When your child is sick, minutes can seem like hours. Writing down this information will ensure you know exactly when the last dose of each medication was given. This simple task can help prevent accidental overdose.
- Always use measuring devices intended for use with medications. If you don’t have any, ask your pharmacist to provide one for you. Never use household spoons or cups as these are inaccurate and may result in accidental overdose.
- Never pretend medicine is candy
- Store medications in a cool, dry place out of the reach of all children. A locked/child-proof cupboard in your bedroom or a high kitchen cupboard is an ideal location.
- If you have any questions about a medication, visit or call your pharmacist before you administer it to your child