Kids Paracetamol dosage changes not shown on tablets

box of paracetamol tablets

One of the good things about having teenage kids is they don’t bring the sick bugs home often like little kids do.

So last weekend when we were all sick, starting with the teenager, it was a bit of a shock as we’d all forgotten how horrible ’throwing up’ can be.

I took care of the teen & the hub who both had headaches with their bug, as usual Paracetamol saved the day and 24 hours later all was well.

So when I was listening to the consumer programme You & Yours on Radio4 I was astounded  to hear a Mother relaying her shock at discovering she had technically overdosed her 12 year old daughter on Paracetamol!  She had no idea the dosage had changed for older children and neither did I.

Apparently in 2011 the dosage was changed on bottled Paracetamol to narrow the bands for a more accurate dosage relating to size and weight of children, but they were not changed on tablet form.

This was under the presumption that children age 0 – 16 only take liquid Paracetamol which isn’t always the case and hasn’t been for a while in our house.

The tablet labelling was to be phased in and now five years later manufacturers have until the end of December 2016 to update the dosage guidance on tablet boxes.  You can find the new guidelines on the NHS website.

The experts say, although this has caused confusion there would be no harm caused in following the old guideline,  but the new instructions are more tailored to suit children.

3 Comments

  1. Mads
    September 2, 2016 / 13:58

    I had no idea either! Thanks for sharing x

  2. August 25, 2016 / 19:27

    I always do ‘read the label’ but it must be a scarey moment to discover that you’ve given the wrong dosage…

    • August 25, 2016 / 21:03

      I know, you would have thought the changes were highlighted everywhere.

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