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Health Tip: Use Caution Before Giving Cough Medicine to Kids

Make sure the pediatrician approves

(HealthDay News) -- Most anyone can buy cough medicine at the local drug store, but that doesn't mean it's harmless, especially to youngsters.

The American Academy of Family Physicians offers this advice when giving cough medicine to children:

  • Never give cough medicine to a child younger than age 4 unless the pediatrician approves it.
  • Never give a child a cough medicine for adults, or any medication that contains aspirin.
  • Don't give your child both a prescription and OTC medication at the same time, or multiple OTC cough medicines unless the pediatrician says it's OK.
  • Don't give your child cough medicine that has expired.
  • If your child doesn't get better quickly, see the pediatrician before continuing an OTC medication.
  • Never give your child a cough medicine just to help the child sleep.
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