Is Nyquil Safe For Your Kids?

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Don’t you get anxious when your little one contracts cold or flu quite frequently? The flu induces a myriad of symptoms and is a tough time for your kid and you. However, there are some OTCs that help relieve her symptoms, and Nyquil is among the most popular ones. But, is Nyquil for kids a safe option? Read on and learn more about that here:

What Is Nyquil?

Nyquil is a combination of a cough suppressant, analgesic, antihistamine and decongestant. It constricts the blood vessels and reduces swelling in the nasal passages. The antihistamine works by blocking histamine action, which reduces symptoms like sneezing and watery eyes. The analgesic and cough suppressant work in the brain and help reduce pain and decrease a dry cough.

The Nyquil liquid is one of the most popular medicines for treating the symptoms of cold and flu. It contains three active ingredients – Acetaminophen which is a pain reliever, Dextromethorphan HBr, a cough suppressant, and Doxylamine succinate, an antihistamine. These three ingredients work together to help relieve various symptoms including a cough, fever, headache, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat, nasal congestion and other aches and pains (1).

[ Read: Nasal Congestion In Children ]

Is Nyquil Safe For Kids?

Well yes and no! Children’s Nyquil helps treat the symptoms of cold and flu in children. Nyquil for children contains the same ingredients found in Nyquil for adults, except alcohol. Remember that these ingredients can lead to allergic reactions. So, if your child develops hives, swelling of any kind or has difficulty breathing, you should seek immediate medical help. If your kid has bronchitis, respiratory infections, phlegmy or a chronic cough, consult your doctor before you give her Nyquil.

Nyquil Dosage For Kids

Many studies say that OTCs like Children’s Nyquil are strictly meant for kids above the age of two, but other studies indicate that Nyquil is safe for toddlers or older kids, only if you follow the right dosage. It is rather important to know your child’s weight as doses are based on the weight. Ensure that you follow the directions for weight and age. Also, if there is no dose on the medicine’s label for kids, consult your pediatrician or pharmacist.

Liquid Nyquil and other OTC medications usually come with a measuring device such as a dropper, spoon, syringe or cup to help measure the correct dose. It is important always to use these measuring devices to give your kid the right dosage. If such a device does not come with the medicine, ask your pharmacist for one. If you are unsure about the right dosage, consult your doctor. Self-medication can lead to many potential side effects and cause nasty reactions for your kid (2).

Studies say that kids who are 4-6 years old shouldn’t be given Nyquil without a doctor’s consent while kids who are 6 to 12-year-old age, can be given 15 ml or 1 tablespoon of Nyquil every 6 hours (3). When it comes to giving children Nyquil or any other medicine, it is crucial to take safety precautions as it can help prevent many serious problems, including life-threatening ones. So, the bottom line is that Nyquil is safe for six-year-old kids, but younger ones need a doctor’s prescription.

[ Read: Are Nasal Sprays Safe For Kids ]

Side Effects Of Nyquil For Kids:

So, now that you know all about Nyquil and how it may be harmful to your kid to take Nyquil without a prescription, or in an incorrect dose. Even you are giving your children Nyquil under the advice of your doctor, you can expect your child to experience side effects which include:

  • Headaches
  • Dry mouth
  • Stomach ache
  • Problems urinating
  • Drowsiness
  • Excitability

These side effects are but a byproduct of Nyquil usage. However, if you self-medicate your kid, then you can expect some more serious side effects, which include:

  • Tremors
  • Mental confusion
  • Hysteria
  • Hallucinations

If you notice any of these symptoms, stop giving Nyquil for children and take them to a doctor immediately.

[ Read: Benefits Of Vicks VapoRub For Kids ]

Nyquil for children is the best way ahead, but needless to say, Nyquil for adults should be avoided at all costs (4). If your child is experiencing the symptoms of a cold and the flu, you should talk to your doctor before taking any action. It is important to keep in mind that giving children any medication without consulting a doctor first is dangerous, and it is no different when it comes to Nyquil. Even if Nyquil for children is readily available in your house, it is strongly advised that you talk to your doctor first and find out what you should do next.

Things To Remember When Taking Nyquil:

Nyquil liquid should be used only as directed by a physician. You should also remember to check the label on the medicine for instructions on exact dosing. Other points to remember are as follows:

  • The medicine may be taken with or without food.
  • You should always use a measuring device that is marked for dosing. If you are uncertain about how to measure the medicine, ask your pharmacist.
  • If you have missed a dose of the medicine, take it as soon as you can. If the time for your next dose is near, you do not need to take the missed one, and you can go back to your normal schedule. Remember, never take two doses at once.
  • If you have any questions regarding how to take Nyquil liquid, talk to your doctor.

You should avoid using Nyquil in circumstances like:

  • If your kid has an allergy to any one of the ingredients in the drug
  • If your kid has high blood pressure, severe heart problems, severe heart blood vessel disease or rapid heartbeat.
  • If your kid is having an asthma attack or is having problems urinating
  • Contact your physician immediately if any of the above applies to your kid.

A Word Of Caution:

  • Never give your kid more than the recommended dosage.
  • As the drug may cause sensitivity to the sun, it is important that your kid avoids staying out in the sun. If the symptoms do not improve within 5 to 7 days of taking Nyquil liquid, or if they worsen, talk your doctor immediately.
  • Lastly, remember that with medication, it is important to get plenty of fluids and rest to get relief from the uncomfortable symptoms of cold and needs to be outdoors for a long period, always make him use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing.
  • If the symptoms do not improve within 5 to 7 days of taking Nyquil liquid, or if they worsen, talk your doctor immediately.
  • Lastly, remember that with medication, it is important to get plenty of fluids and rest to get relief from the uncomfortable symptoms of cold and flu

Did you give your kid Nyquil for the cold? Did you self-medicate or consult the doctor? Tell us here.

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