Sunday, January 4, 2009

Recommended Dosage?

I'm the kind of girl who doesn't like to take much medicine. I balk at a doctor's recommendation of antibiotics. I'd rather just go to sleep if a headache is in progress close to bed time. The idea of all those extra foreign chemicals in my body makes me hold out as long as possible to break down and take something. (Strangely enough, I lovingly consume lots and lots of processed foods - but that's neither here nor there.)

My approach to medication for the kids is somewhat restrained as well. If Mia has a low fever but is still playing happily, I don't necessarily give her anything. I figure, the fever is doing a job so I'll let it work uninterrupted unless I see a change.

So Mia doesn't have medicine too terribly often...however...she loves it. No matter how sick she is, she always smiles when we're pouring the syrupy stuff into her mouth.

Over the past couple of weeks, whenever she'd been complaining of a headache or a tummy ache, it was hard to tell what the problem was so I wasn't sure what to do about medicine. Surely she wouldn't pretend to be ill; I couldn't see why she'd make it up. I hated to give her medicine not knowing if it was warranted.

But the more she complained of a headache over the course of one day, the more I thought she probably needed some medicine.

Mistake #1: I told her, "We'll get you some Tylenol to make you feel better." She was so excited, I swore she'd planned it. Her eyes fairly glowed with anticipation (maybe I shouldn't hold out on sweets so often?). But is a 3 year old capable of such deception? She got the Tylenol, and acted more chipper for the rest of the day. Running naked, pushing her sister over...you know...chipper.

Mistake #2: The next day she talked about her head hurting again...and I gave her Tylenol again. But this time I saw no outward signs that anything had changed. She still complained, and was grumpy in general. This may or may not have been a sign of sickness, as grumpiness is as common as preciousness with her.

After that whenever she said her head hurt, I just told her it'd feel better soon, and she stopped saying it eventually. I realized I never should have told her the part about Tylenol making you feel better. She knows I want her to feel better, right? She knows how to get the desired dosage, right? So from now on, I guess I'll just give her medicine without saying anything about why.

But it's really too late for that. Mia's figured out how to get what she wants, and has kept trying hard to achieve her Tylenol-goal.

Last night, we were getting her ready for bed, and she blurted out "I want some...!" Then she stopped, with her mouth hanging open thoughtfully before backtracking to say, "I have a head-y-ache, Mama, do you think I want some Tylenol?" Her cute little head was tilted to the side; if she were a puppy, her ears would've been cocked.

I held my ground. No Tylenol for the little trickster.

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Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?