Tamiflu For Kids - Uses, Dosage And Side Effects

Tamiflu For Kids

Image: Shutterstock

Does your kid suffer from the flu or common cold more often than not, and are you concerned that it may not be good for his health in the long run? Do you want to know more about some medications that your kid might need to take, like Tamiflu for kids? If you said yes, it might be a good idea for you to read our post. Scroll down to learn all about the Tamiflu medication, and how it helps your kid here.

What Is Tamiflu?

Oseltamivir is an antiviral medication that treats patients who suffer from influenza A and influenza B (flu). It is an orally-administered medication, and it prevents your kid from being exposed to the flu. Tamiflu is the commercial name of Oseltamivir. It is a part of a group of various anti-influenza drugs that are known as neuraminidase inhibitors. The drugs act by keeping the viral enzyme neuraminidase away from the host that inhibits the influenza virus from invading the cells in your kid’s respiratory tract (1).

Is Tamiflu Safe For Kids?

Medical experts believe that the first and the most effective way to curb influenza or flu and to prevent it from recurring is to give your kids the right vaccination for the flu. However, certain drugs that are effective in treating influenza are safe for kids, and Tamiflu is one of them.

According to the FDA, Tamiflu is approved to be given to kids in the United States and is especially popular during the flu season. Tamiflu can safely be given to your kid as early as after the first two weeks of birth and later. It can help to prevent any cases of influenza in your kids. It is available as a pill or as a liquid to be taken ingested (2).

Tamiflu is the only antiviral drug that the FDA has approved for kids, even if they are younger than one year of age. Kids who are younger than two years of age are at the highest risk of being affected with influenza. Similarly, kids who are younger than six months of age are at the highest risk of requiring immediate hospitalization due to influenza. Hence, it is extremely important to get your little one the Tamiflu drug. Tamiflu has also been approved to be used as a preventive medication for influenza in kids who are 13 years or older.

[ Read: Common Childhood Diseases And Vaccines ]

Are There Any Side Effects Of Giving Tamiflu For Kids?

Most medications come with some or the other form of side effects that are usually mild, and the side effects associated with giving Tamiflu to your kid are more often than not, quite mild. Here are some tamiflu side effects in kids they may experience after having a dose or course of Tamiflu:

  • Your kid may experience some amount of nausea or vomiting after taking Tamiflu.
  • However, your kid will not experience severe symptoms if the medication is accompanied by food. So make sure that when you are giving tamiflu dosage for child, whether as a pill or as a liquid, your kid should first eat something and then take the medication (3).

[ Read: Symptoms Of Flu In Children ]

The Right Tamiflu Dosage For Kids:

Even though the FDA has considered it safe to give Tamiflu to kids, it is rather important to know how much is enough, and follow your doctor’s prescription properly. Not giving the right dosage can lead to an overdose or an under dose, which can trigger some serious effects, especially for kids.

  • In most cases, the dosage is either mentioned for Tamiflu in its liquid form or for its pill form.
  • The company that manufactures Tamiflu, known as Roche, has sent warnings to all doctors and pharmacists in to make them aware of the right way of prescribing the dosage.
  • Manufacturers warn the doctors and pharmacists to prescribe the dosage of the medication in terms of milligrams. The liquid form of Tamiflu is given with the help of a syringe that is marked at 30, 45 and 60 milligrams. The manufacturers have also made it clear that in case the doctors or the pharmacists use measuring terms such as teaspoon or milliliters instead of milligrams, they should also provide an adequate measuring device instead of the syringe with the measurements marked in milligrams.
  • It is extremely important that parents or caregivers can understand the exact dosage while giving the medication to a kid. In case of an under-dose, your kid is at risk of getting infected. In case of an overdose, your kid is at risk of being exposed to toxicity.
  • Always make sure to check the measurement instructions for the dosage, if your kid is being prescribed a dose of Tamiflu. If you have any confusion, speak to the doctor about it and ask to know exactly how much medication you have to give, especially if it is in the liquid form (4).

[ Read: Nasal Congestion In Children ]

Here are a few more guidelines by the US FDA about the dosage of Tamiflu that should be given to kids and how it should be given:

  • There are specific dosing recommendations for kids who are over the age of one year, and all doctors and pharmacists must adhere to the same. Make sure you speak with your kid’s doctor or the pharmacist about the same before giving your kid the medication.
  • In case the kid is young and is below the age of one, the amount of dose that has to be given will be based on the individual weight of the kid. There is no general guideline that will be applicable in this case, and all dosage will have to be measured on an individual basis.
  • Kids who are younger than the age of one will have to be given a dosage of three milligrams per kilogram twice a day for five days. But check this with your kid’s doctor first.
  • For kids who are younger than one year of age, your kid’s doctor or pharmacist will have to provide you with a separate dispenser. The standard one that is available with the Tamiflu medication will not be applicable in this case.
  • Older kids who weigh more than 40 kg, as well as adolescents, will be prescribed the same dosage as adults (5).

[ Read: MMR Vaccine For Children ]

How Does Tamiflu Help Kids?

Giving Tamiflu to your kid as per the prescription and the right dosage can help to reduce the symptoms as well as help to prevent the infection from recurring again. Here are a few ways in which giving tamiflu dose for kids can help:

  • Giving Tamiflu twice a day for the duration of five days will help to reduce the duration for which the influenza virus may affect your child. If your kid is otherwise in good health and is not taking any other medication other than Tamiflu, it can help reduce the symptoms of influenza by at least one to one and a half days.
  • It can also help to reduce the symptoms of the common flu, reduce their severity and intensity.
  • If your kid has had to stay away from school due to the infection or has been on bed rest, giving Tamiflu as per the prescribed dosage will help to get your kid back to the routine.
  • Even if your kid has earlier been affected with asthma, Tamiflu will work on influenza and will not interfere with any symptoms or conditions associated with asthma.
  • It is always recommended that you give your kids Tamiflu within the first 48 hours after you notice the initial symptoms. It will be most effective to give the medication within this time frame as the drug will be able to tackle the infection better and faster, and will also prevent it from spreading or growing worse.
  • If you give the Tamiflu medication to your kid after your kid has suffered from influenza for a few days already, it will not cause much of a difference to the symptoms as well as to the overall condition.

[ Read: Influenza Vaccine For Kids ]

Recipes That Enhance The Effects Of The Tamiflu Medication:

When your little one has the flu, there isn’t much you can do about it. Along with some warm hugs and fussing over, he needs the Tamiflu medication. As we mentioned that the Tamiflu drug is more effective when taken along with food, so here we list some lovely recipes to augment its effects. These delicious recipes will help cure your little one’s flu in no time:

1. Hot And Sour Soup With Mushrooms, Cabbage And Rice:

Hot And Sour Soup With Mushrooms, Cabbage And Rice

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need:

  • 1 tbsp. of canola oil
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced shitake mushrooms
  • 1 to 3 finely diced jalapeno peppers
  • 6 cloves of minced garlic
  • 3-inch piece of grated ginger
  • 8 cups of chicken broth
  • ½ cup of jasmine rice
  • 1 to 3 zested and juiced limes
  • 2 tbsp. of soy sauce and some more to serve
  • ½ small head of cabbage, cut in half and thinly shaved
  • Chili garlic sauce to serve – optional

How To:

  1. In a heavy pot, heat the oil over a medium heat. Next, add the mushrooms and keep cooking for about five minutes. Make sure you do not stir the mushrooms at this stage.
  1. Once the five minutes are up, stir the mushrooms well and cook them for five more minutes. Make sure that the mushrooms turn a nice brown color but do not get burned.
  1. Now add the diced peppers, the garlic, and the ginger and cook for another five minutes, or till you can feel the aromas drifting off the pan. The mushroom and the garlic and ginger, as well as the pepper, should all be slightly tender by now.
  1. Once you have checked the texture of the ingredients that are already cooking, you need to add the lime zest and the chicken broth.
  1. Keep cooking and let it all come to a simmer. Once that happens, add the rice and cover the pot with a well-fitting lid.
  1. Let the whole mix simmer for about another 20 minutes or till the time the rice turns just about soft.
  1. Now add the shaved cabbage, the lime juice and the soy sauce and let it all simmer for another few minutes. You also have to make sure that all the ingredients mix well and that they are all heated through.
  1. You can add some more lime juice or soy sauce if you feel it is a little bland.
  1. Serve with a little soy sauce and some chili garlic sauce if your kid would prefer the same.

2. Chicken Noodle Soup With Dill:

Chicken Noodle Soup With Dill

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need:

  • 10 cups of reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 3 medium diced carrots
  • 1 large stalk of diced celery
  • 3 tbsp. of minced fresh ginger
  • 6 cloves of minced garlic
  • 3 cups of whole wheat egg noodles
  • 4 cups of shredded and cooked skinless chicken breast
  • 3 tbsp. of chopped fresh dill
  • 1 tbsp. of lemon juice or as per taste

How To:

  1. Add the broth in a pan and bring it to boil over medium heat.
  1. Once it starts to boil, add the carrots, the celery, the ginger and the garlic, and cook it without covering with a lid.
  1. Keep cooking on medium heat till the vegetables start to turn tender. It may take about 20 minutes but may also take less or more, so do make sure that you first poke the vegetables with a fork to check if they are already tender or need more time.
  1. Once the vegetables are done, add the chicken and the noodles and let it simmer for another eight to ten minutes. By then the chicken and the noodles should be done.
  1. Add the dill and the lemon juice and remove the soup from the heat.

3. Miso Soup With Rice And Poached Egg:

Miso Soup With Rice And Poached Egg

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need:

For The Dashi:

  • 2 quarts of water
  • One 3 inch square of sea kelp
  • ¾thcup of bonito flakes

For The Miso Soup:

  • 2 quarts of dashi
  • ½ cup of miso paste
  • A 12-ounce block of silken tofu and cut up into ¼thinch cubes
  • 1 small bunch of scallions with the green tops thinly sliced

For Each Bowl Of Soup:

  • 1 cup cooked white rice
  • 1 large egg
  • Soy sauce
  • Chili garlic sauce
  • Sesame oil

How To:

To Make The Dashi:

  1. Add two quarts of water in a large pan over medium heat. In the meanwhile, keep two separate quart bowls ready on the side with a fine mesh strainer or a piece of cheesecloth in each.
  1. While the water is on the boil, place the sea kelp in cold water and put it on heat. Now turn the heat to high and let it heat till it just about starts to boil.
  1. Remove it from the heat and take the sea kelp out. Add the bonito flakes in the water and let it steep for about five minutes. Strain the water into the two bowls that you had prepared earlier and had set aside.
  1. Keep the ingredients in the strainer and pour back the strained liquid, or the dashi, into the pot.

To Make The Miso Soup:

  1. Add the strained dashi to the pot and bring it to a boil. In the meanwhile, prepare the miso paste in a bowl as per the instructions that are mentioned on the pack.
  1. Once the broth has started to boil, add one cup of hot broth in the bowl in which you prepared the miso paste. Mix it properly and whisk it well till all the mixture has combined and it has formed a nice thick paste sort of consistency.
  1. Add the miso and the broth mix back into the pot in which the broth was boiling. Now turn the heat to low. Keep stirring and mixing the miso till it gets completely dissolved in the broth.
  1. Make sure that you keep the heat to low, as you should not let the broth boil after you have added the miso.
  1. Now add the cubes of tofu as well as the sliced scallion greens. Keep heating the soup till all the ingredients are nicely warmed.

To Make The Bowl Of Soup:

  1. Take one cup of cooked white rice and place a cup in each bowl of soup.
  1. For each bowl of soup that you are going to prepare, poach one single egg. If you do not wish to poach the egg separately, you can also add the egg to a bowl that is filled with the hot broth, cover it with a lid and let it stand for about a few minutes.
  1. Now pour one cup of the miso you prepared over the rice that you earlier placed in each bowl. Add the poached egg on top of the layer of miso.
  1. Once you are about to serve, add a little dash of soy sauce, some chili garlic sauce, and some sesame oil.

Read: Ayurveda (Medicine) For Kids ]

4. Curried Squash And Chicken Soup:

Curried Squash And Chicken Soup

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need:

  • A 10-ounce package of frozen and pureed winter squash
  • ½ a cup of lite coconut milk
  • ½ a cup of water
  • 8 ounces of thinly sliced boneless and skinless chicken
  • A 6-ounce bag of baby spinach
  • 2 tsp of lime juice
  • 2 tsp of brown sugar
  • ½ or 1 tsp of Thai red curry paste
  • ¼thtsp of salt

How To:

  1. In a saucepan, add the squash, the water and the coconut milk and heat it all over medium to high heat.
  1. Keep cooking for about ten minutes and make sure you keep stirring it as you cook. The ingredients should be completely thawed and start to warm through as you cook them.
  1. Once you have checked that the above is done, add the chicken and reduce the heat to a medium. Reduce it down further in some time to make it as low as simmer.
  1. Keep cooking for about three more minutes and make sure you keep stirring the ingredients as you are cooking.
  1. Now add the spinach, the lime juice, the sugar and the curry paste. Also add the salt now as per your taste. You may want to add less or more than the specified amount.
  1. Now keep cooking till the chicken turns tender and has completely cooked through. It could take about three to five minutes, but make sure you first check the chicken as it could also take a bit longer in some cases.
  1. Once it is done, remove it from the heat and serve your kid.

5. Dijon Chicken Stew:

Dijon Chicken Stew

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need:

  • ¼thcup of water
  • 2 tbsp. of Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp. of corn starch
  • 1 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup of sliced shallots
  • ¼thcup of chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp. of chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 pound of boneless and skinless chicken breasts cut up into small bite sized pieces
  • 8 cups of chopped escarole
  • A 14 ounce can of reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 1/8thtsp of salt
  • 1/8thtsp of freshly ground black pepper

How To:

  1. In a bowl, mix the water, the mustard, and the corn starch. Whisk it well together till all the ingredients have combined, and there are no lumps left. If the mix is properly blended, you will get a paste like consistency. Keep it aside for now.
  1. Heat some oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the shallots, the rosemary, and the garlic and cook for about a minute. Make sure you keep stirring them.
  1. Now add a little broth and cover the pan and let it all come to a boil.
  1. Remove the cover and cook again, till the chicken broth has almost evaporated.
  1. Add the chicken and the escarole along with the remaining broth.
  1. Simmer and cook for about five minutes. Add the cornstarch mix and cook for another ten minutes. Add salt and pepper and remove from heat.

[ Read: Immunization Chart For Children ]

Whether your kid is suffering from flu, or you have to give Tamiflu as a preventive medication, make sure you understand the dosage and get all the information from the doctor.

Was your kid ever prescribed Tamiflu? Did he suffer from any side effects? Tell us about it here. Leave a comment for fellow moms here.

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