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Asthma inhalers

There are many types of inhalers. Our leaflet gives information about using an aerosol inhaler with a 'spacer' device and a dry-powder inhaler. If you are not sure whether you are using the inhaler properly, or need help, contact your asthma nurse or pharmacist, who will be able to show you or check what you are doing.

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Capsules

Capsules are given by mouth (orally). Most must be swallowed whole, but some may be chewed, or opened and then the contents sprinkled in food. Find out how to give the type of capsule you have for your child.

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Creams and ointments

The leaflet and the video will cover creams which contain active ingredients, as well as those which also contain moisturising creams which are called emollients. These active ingredients are things such as topical steroids, antibiotics or fungal treatments, and are often used in skin conditions such as eczema.

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Ear drops

Medicines for the ear are available as ear drops. You will need to wash your hands before and after giving the ear drops, and you may need help from another adult.

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Eye drops

Use eye drops only in your child’s infected eye, unless your doctor has told you to treat both eyes. Wash your hands before and after giving the drops. You may need help from another adult.

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Eye ointment

If you need to give eye ointment, use only in your child’s infected eye, unless your doctor has told you to treat both eyes. Wash your hands before and after giving the ointment. You may need help from another adult.

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Gastrostomy tube

  • This film will show you how to give a liquid medicine to your child through a gastrostomy tube.
  • You should watch the film all the way through to the end before giving the medicine for the first time.
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Granules or powder

Some medicines come as granules or as powder, and are given by mouth (orally). They can usually be mixed in with a small amount of food, or in water or juice.

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Liquid medicine using an oral syringe from a bottle fitted with a bung

You can measure out the right amount of liquid medicine using an oral syringe or a medicine spoon. Many bottles of liquid medicine come with a ‘bung’ to help you draw up the medicine into the oral syringe. You can get all of these from your pharmacist. Do not use a kitchen teaspoon as it will not give the right amount.

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Nasogastric tube (NG tube)

  • This film will show you how to give a liquid medicine to your child through a nasogastric tube.
  • A nasogastric tube it is often abbreviated to NG tube.
  • You should watch the film all the way through to the end before giving the medicine for the first time.
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Part dose of a tablet or capsule

Many medicines come in tablet form but you might only need to give your child a part of a tablet. In this film we will show you how to do this.

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Rectal medicines (suppositories and enemas)

Rectal medicines have to be administered through the anus into the rectum (back passage, or bottom). They must not be taken by mouth. Types of rectal medicines include suppositories, foam enemas and liquid enemas. 

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Tablets

Tablets are given by mouth (orally). Depending on the type of tablet, they can be swallowed or chewed, dissolved in water or juice, put on the tongue, or mixed with a small amount of food. 
Make sure you know which type of tablet you have.

Giving medicines

Medicines for children come in different forms. Tablets, caplets and liquid medicines are given orally (by mouth). There are medicines that are used in the eye, ear or nose, and inhalers for asthma medicines. Other medicines, such as suppositories or enemas, are given rectally (in the back passage, or bottom).

Watch videos and read leaflets to find out how to give your child different types of medicines.

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"I have recently discovered your information leaflets and found them very user friendly, informative and helpful. I passed the link on to everyone in our community child health team, and they have given similar feedback."
Dr Kathy Padoa, Consultant Community Paediatrician