You may need to take medicines every day, or only once in a while. Either way, you want to make sure that the medicines are safe and will help you get better. In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration is in charge of assuring the safety and effectiveness of both prescription and over-the-counter medicines.

Even safe drugs can cause unwanted side effects or interactions with food or other medicines you may be taking. They may not be safe during pregnancy. To reduce the risk of reactions and make sure that you get better, it is important for you to take your medicines correctly and be careful when giving medicines to children.

Source: MedLinePlus (NIH)1

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When it comes to taking medicines, kids aren't just small adults. For prescription medicines, there is a "Pediatric" section of the label. It says whether the medication has been studied for its effects on children. It also tells you what ages have been studied. Aside from drugs for fever or pain, most over-the-counter products haven't actually been studied in children for effectiveness, safety, or dosing.

When you give medicine to your child, be sure you're giving the right medicine and the right amount. Read and follow the label directions. Use the correct dosing device. If the label says two teaspoons and you're using a dosing cup with ounces only, don't guess. Get the proper measuring device. Don't substitute another item, such as a kitchen spoon. Talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider before giving two medicines at the same time. That way, you can avoid a possible overdose or an unwanted interaction. Follow age and weight limit recommendations. If the label says don't give to children under a certain age or weight, don't do it.

Food and Drug Administration

Source: MedLinePlus (NIH)2

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Medicine: The art and science of studying, performing research on, preventing, diagnosing, and treating disease, as well as the maintenance of health.3


Types may include:4

Types of Medicine:

  • Behavioral Medicine
  • Biomedicine
  • Clinical Medicine
  • Epidemiology
  • Genetic Medicine
  • Medical Specialty
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Patient-Centered Medicine
  • Personalized Medicine
  • Regenerative Medicine
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Veterinary Medicine

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  1. Source: MedLinePlus (NIH): medicines.html
  2. Source: MedLinePlus (NIH): medicinesandchildren.html
  3. Source: MeSH (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  4. Source: NCI Thesaurus

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Note: This site is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. See your doctor or other qualified medical professional for all your medical needs.