I have two kids in grade school who are constantly bringing home colds to share. I have a medicine cabinet full of cough syrups, cold and flu remedies, cough drops…well, you get the idea. My question is, how can I make sure I’m doling out all this medicine safely?

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Your concerns are legitimate; it’s easy to give overdoses of antihistamines, decongestants, and pain relievers/fever reducers. Here are some recommendations from the National Capital Poison Center for safely taking—and administering—cough, cold, and allergy medications:

  • Treat only the symptoms you have. Don’t take a multi-symptom cold medicine if you have only a runny nose.
  • Read and compare the labels for all of the medications you are taking. For instance, if you are taking a cold medicine that has a decongestant in it, don’t take a cough medicine that contains a decongestant.
  • Make sure that you read all warnings on the labels. Decongestants, for example, should not be taken by persons with high blood pressure (unless the person’s doctor approves).
  • Read and follow dosing recommendations carefully, especially for children, whose age and/or weight determines the safe amount of medication for them.
  • Do not take more than the recommended amount of medicine, thinking that more medicine will get rid of the cold more quickly; you may make yourself sicker.

Often, Kentucky medication mistakes are not made by the consumer but by the prescribing physician or the pharmacist. If you need skilled legal representation to fight your medication error case in Kentucky, call Gray and White Law at 502-210-8942 or toll free at 888-450-4456 to set up a FREE, no-obligation consultation.