Struggling with awful-tasting medicine? This could help!

I’m pretty sure my last post started off with a little lament about how we all were sick, and alas, here we are again.  This cold/flu season has really been kicking our butts, and we haven’t had a day where everyone in the house has been well since early November!  And as luck would have it, this latest round hit right as we were heading into Christmas.

G brought it home first, this hideous monster of a cold/cough/sore throat illness, and the first day he woke up with a fever and sore throat, I hauled him off to the pediatrician.  Now, I NEVER make a trip to the pediatrician unless I feel like it’s a true necessity, but I saw a couple of spots on his tonsils and figured it was strep, and since it was three days before Christmas I wanted to shut that nonsense down hard and fast. But the strep test was negative, and the doc said it was “just some virus,” and as a precautionary measure, she wrote us a prescription for a Z-pack for him, with the clear instructions NOT to give it to him unless the fever continued for another 48 hours and/or he started getting a lot of colored snot.  

Let it be known, also, that I am definitely not one to abuse antibiotics and other serious medications (though I have been known to play a little fast-and-loose with the Tylenol, but dude, YOU live with twins cutting molars and let me know how long you can hold out, mmkay?). I waited it out, and on Christmas Eve, when G woke up again with the same damn fever for the fourth day in a row, we went ahead and started the Z-pack. 

^That’s the stuff.  Azithromycin. Or Zithromax, if you prefer a brand name. Also, allegedly cherry flavored.  LIES.

Day 1 was fine because G didn’t know what was coming.  He took it, grimaced, and that was that.  But the following day, on Christmas morning, when it was time for round two?  Whoooooooo boy, did that child dig his heels in and fight!  It was a bad scene, and there was nothing we could do to convince him to take it.  No bribe was worth it for him. And, I mean, if you can’t bribe a kid with a Christmas tree full of presents, what other collateral could you possibly bring to the table?  A chocolate chip?  An otter pop? He was not having it.  And in the end, I’m not sure how much we managed to get into him that day, but it did not go well.

On Day 3, when we attempted to mix it with a little juice to try and fool him into drinking it, we finally understood.  I took a tiny taste, and – WHOA.  This stuff is AWFUL. Like, truly, unbelievably, disgustingly vile.  The juice did nothing to mask the taste.  I tried adding some sugar to it, but it didn’t really do enough to help, and we ended up putting it all in a syringe and shooting it into his (very unwilling) mouth again – and having half of it spat back at us immediately afterwards.  

Day 4 is where I had my stroke of genius!  I pulled a Mary Poppins and grabbed the sugar from the pantry.

(Why yes, our decrepit little gingerbread houses *are* still sitting on the kitchen counter! Thanks for noticing!)

I poured about 1/4 cup or so of sugar into a bowl and then made a little valley in the top of it.

Then I took the syringe of the terribly foul medication and dribbled it into the sugar slowly, trying to keep it all in the indentation I’d made.

You don’t want any of it to touch the edges – it should all be cradled in the pile of sugar.

Then I took my spoon and scooped the sugar from the outside edges over the liquid so it would all be covered and have a chance to start setting up.

Once it was all covered, I rolled it around a couple of times, carefully, letting all of the liquid soak in to the sugar granules.

Then I chopped that log of medicine into a couple of manageable little bites.  They became crumbly little chunks of antibiotic candy.

BAM.  Mary Poppins knew her stuff, people.  A spoonful of sugar got this horrific medicine down without a fight.  I figured I would be able to get G to just plop them into his mouth one by one, but he nibbled on them instead, turning each one into a couple of bites.  But he did it without complaint!  Not so bad after everything we’d gone through!

And listen, I’m not an idiot, and I do know sugar is evil, so please spare me any sanctimony.  I wouldn’t do this unless it was an absolute last resort.  But if you’re stuck in a situation like we were with this, and you’re desperate, this might work for you.  It definitely beats having them spit it back in your face! 


15 thoughts on “Struggling with awful-tasting medicine? This could help!

  1. THANK YOU SOOO MUCH! This is the exact medicine they gave my son today and its nasty. I will try this; all my other ideas have failed miserably.
    Thank you!

    1. I hope it works! Good luck – giving kids medicine can be such a nightmare! 🙁

  2. Right!!! Sad thing is I freaking told the doctor that my 4 year old does NOT like taking liquid medication…. Then she gives us that stuff… I mean… REALLY? Gonna try this tomorrow.

  3. Thank you so much for this idea my little guy is awful at getting this junk down..we have tried everything this did the trick..well better then anything else

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