What drugs and medicines are safe for children?


Stiftung Warentest has examined non-prescription and prescription drugs for children. The most extensive and largest study ever done on the subject. With sometimes terrifying results. According to Stiftung Warentest, the question of which medication you can give your children with a clear conscience is generally even more difficult to answer than many parents already suspect. The simple reason: there are simply not enough studies on most active ingredients or combinations of active ingredients that explicitly focus on the effects and side effects of preparations in the child’s body. The data situation is shockingly weak, according to Prof. Dr. Gaebler.

In addition, there are a wide variety of preparations (almost 30 percent market share), which are repeatedly prescribed for children or sold in pharmacies, which are either not at all – or only poorly – suitable for them. A common example is the active ingredient acetylsalicylic acid, which is contained in aspirin or ASA. But it is also used in many cold and flu medications to improve general awareness through symptom relief. The better alternatives here would be ibuprofen or paracetamol. There is enough data on these ingredients to say that when used in moderation, they will not have long-term effects on children.

How dangerous can drugs be for children?

The Stiftung Warentest once again makes it clear that physically children are not just adults in miniature form. The child’s body not only reacts differently to active ingredients because it is still small – and weighs less. Children’s organs are also still developing and growing. For a variety of reasons, drugs have completely different effects or side effects in children than can be observed in adults.

Book recommendation: “Medicines for Children”

To give parents a guide to hand, Stiftung Warentest has written a book on the subject of “Medicines for Children”. This book gives parents the opportunity to take an informed look at the preparations that they can buy for their child without a prescription, that are recommended in children’s advertisements, or the preparations that have been prescribed for them by their pediatrician.

Click here for the book! (CLICK)

This reference work is not intended to replace professional advice from experts. It can help readers use medication in children responsibly and in an informed manner. It can also provide the basis for parents to ask the right questions in conversation in the pharmacy or doctor’s office and to participate independently in the treatment decision for their child. For this purpose, Stiftung Warentest has rated the funds most frequently used in Germany for children up to the age of twelve. The basis were thousands of high-quality, scientific studies that were used to evaluate the individual preparations.

Recommended for parents

We give the book “Medicines for Children” nine out of ten stars. Absolutely recommendable in terms of content. Such a detailed and understandable book was long overdue for parents. In particular, since up until now you could only really rely on opinions in an emergency. Be it from befriended parents, or the doctor or pharmacist you trust. According to Stiftung Warentest, there are ultimately hardly any reliable studies available. Now there is an explicit assessment for every drug, including possible tolerable alternatives.

Only the price lets us deduct a point. Even if we can well estimate the immense effort of such work, such a book would certainly be affordable and interesting for a broader group of buyers, if only it had a lower price.


Video material: © Stiftung Warentest



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