Eliminating Dosing Errors: Difference Between Tablespoon and Teaspoon
Avoid Spooning up the Wrong Dose of Medicine
We know it can be difficult for you to give your child medicine with all the different units of measurement such as tablespoons, teaspoons, and milliliters. Unfortunately, pharmacies and doctors don’t make things easier, as they often interchange these measurement units on prescriptions.
In order to reduce your child’s chance of suffering a medication mistake, you should never use tablespoons or teaspoons. Because these names are similar to each other and their abbreviations look almost identical, many parents often confuse one for another. Also, every kitchen spoon is different, which means that you won’t know if you are giving your child too much or too little of the medication he or she needs.
Instead of using tablespoons and teaspoons to measure a child’s dose of liquid medication, it is best to use milliliters. When you are at the doctor’s office, ask your doctor to write the prescription out in milliliters. This will decrease the chance for a medication error. When picking up your child’s prescription from the pharmacy, ask the pharmacist to check the milliliters, to make sure it is correct for your child’s age and weight. Additionally, ask them for a syringe or dosing cup that measures in milliliters. Some children’s liquid medication comes with dosing cups or syringes; however, check to make sure the device measures in milliliters and not in another measurement unit.
As a society, we should push to adopt a milliliter-only unit of measurement to help reduce prescription mistakes and drug errors in children. If you agree, please share this information with others on Facebook to help spread the word.