Getting Your Toddler to Take Medicine She Hates: Your Input Needed!

Getting Your Toddler to Take Medicine She Hates: Your Input Needed!

- in Health

I called the doctor’s office and practically BEGGED them to give me a new prescription.

“You’re just going to have to force it into her mouth, drops at a time, with her head tilted back.”


Let me back up a second. Last week we went to the doctor to get a blistery rash in her diaper area checked out. It had been there for a bit, wasn’t getting better. Although it didn’t bother her in the slightest (so strange), it seemed off to us.

The doc said it was a bacterial infection and prescribed an antibiotic. Great, I thought, she took her other antibiotic like a champ when she had an ear infection so this will be the same.

LOL. Did you know all antibiotics taste different? I did not.

The first couple days, my toddler (a young toddler, 13 months) took the medicine, albeit more and more begrudgingly. Day 3 – flat out refusal, though we managed to get a few drops down. Day 4 – flat out refusal (I was sick in bed all day, but husband reported complete failure).

We tried forcing – although we were probably not as forceful as we could have been – and we tried mixing with food. Nothing. Worked.

Day 5 – I made the call to the doctor and was told to suck it up (more or less).

So I did it. I held my precious baby (SCREAMING TODDLER) and forced her to take the medicine. It was a slow process. It took 20 minutes the first time because I had to do it drop by drop by drop by drop – she would hold it in her mouth as long as possible and try to spit it out (even with her head tilted back).

But then. The next morning – yes there was crying and teeth clenching, but she swallowed each spurt of medicine fast. The same thing at night.

Was it terrible? Yes. Am I traumatized? YES. But it worked, I guess. I mean yes, it worked – my priority is getting her to take. the. darn. medicine.

This is something she needs, but she doesn’t understand that – so it’s very tough.

Anyway – I am asking you guys: what strategies did I overlook, specifically for toddlers (with whom you can’t really reason or make a bargain (bribe))? What have you veteran parents learned that could help other struggling parents?

BTW, she forgives me pretty fast each time, as you can see 🙂


About the author

Stephanie Prause is a 30-something living in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. She is a corporate communications professional, juggling a career she thrives at with being a mom and wife. Stephanie is passionate about healthy living (which really just means eating nutritious foods and staying active)...but she also loves craft beer, chips and salsa, and naps. On her blog, Good Health & Great Cheer, she explores all of those things that make life worth living. Stephanie is a frequent blogger at and serves as the Marketing Committee Chair on the Board of Directors for the Hanna Perkins Center for Childhood Development. Other interests include cooking from scratch and reading voraciously (at least for about 20 minutes before she passes out mid-sentence).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *