How to Get a Toddler to Take Cough Syrup

5 tips to get it down the teeny, tiny hatch.

How to Get a Toddler to Take Cough Syrup
*We’ve partnered with Maty’s, a company started by a mom, that makes all natural and organic whole food health remedies, to help ease your cold & flu season. Getting your kids to take their cough syrup was so much easier when they were unsuspecting babies. All you needed was a surprise shot from a syringe, and, barring too much spit-up, the deed was done. Getting your toddler to take cough syrup, on the other hand, usually requires CIA-type techniques. Unless you're one of those parents who live in an Instagram-perfect world, whose kids are always dressed in white pinafores and who obediently line up to take their medicine as instructed, you'll have to get creative come cold & flu season. Well, not to worry, Mama. We've partnered with Maty's All-Natural & Organic Cough Syrups, to arm you with 5 tricks to put up your sleeve while facing off with a medicine-averse toddler: 1. Make it a game. Does your kid run and hide as soon as he sees you even glance at the medicine cabinet? Think about a high-reward object or activity that he would do almost anything for, and offer that as the "prize" for taking his cough syrup. This may require you loosening some of your rules for the time being (i.e. you normally wouldn't give your kid a lollipop at 6 am). But hey, think about the means to the end. 2. Use it as a secret ingredient. A cup of cough syrup on it’s own does not look very appetizing to a toddler. But smoothies, yogurt, juices, or oatmeal? Two toddler thumbs up! Maty’s cough syrups are made with whole food ingredients, so you can use them the same way you would use a spoonful of honey or maple syrup. You can even drizzle it on your kid's morning pancakes! 3. Stay ahead of the game. A cold (or worse, the flu) doesn't have to be an inevitability. Build up your toddler’s resistance by giving him a dose of Maty’s cough syrup as a daily immune booster (see our tip on the Secret Ingredient above!). Maty's cough syrup contains 10 immune-boosting ingredients in every serving, so if you suspect your kid is coming down with something, start doing a daily dose to keep coughs and colds away in the first place. 4. Don't force it. When you’re feeling frustrated, you might be tempted to hold down flailing arms and legs, pry open those clenched jaws and hope for the best (no? Just us?). That tactic will make it rough getting him to take medicine the next time (or ever again). If your toddler starts backing away from you like you're a Disney villain when he sees you approaching with cough syrup in hand, explain that you are not going to force him to take it. Tell him that he can hold it himself, or he can help you hold it. The more control you (seem to) give him, the less scary the medicine-taking experience will feel. 5. Try the M&M Trick. We don't know what it is about M&M’s (ok, yes we do, they're delicious), but kids are just wild for those tiny balls of sugar. We know lots of mamas that swear by M&M's for potty training, but you can also use them to get your kid to take cold medicine. Place a small pile in his cute little palm, and for every sip of cough syrup he takes, he gets an M&M. (Make sure to wash those hands before and afterward, unless you like rainbow-covered furniture. Nervous toddler hands have a tendency to melt candy-covered-chocolate pretty fast.) Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash.


Matys Organic Children's Cough Syrup

Maty's Organic Children's Mucus Cough Syrup

Maty's Organic Children's Goodnight Cough Syrup

10 must-have registry items that will change your life, mama

The baby gear heavy hitters that should be top of your list

Calling all mamas-to-be! It's a fundamental truth of (impending) motherhood that your prepping-for-baby To Do list can feel a mile long, but really the best way to feel organized is to sort out the most important item at the top of your list: your registry. Sure the items you choose to include will end up running the gamut from nice-to-haves to absolutely essential game-changers, but mamas in the know quickly learn one thing: Not all baby gear is created equal.

So while you can and should pepper your registry with adorable inclusions that aren't necessarily can't-live-withouts (go ahead, add 'em!), you should make sure you're ticking the boxes on those pieces of baby gear that can be absolute life savers once you're in full-blown mama mode. From car seats to bouncers and playmats, your play and travel gear will be some of the most obvious important items on your list, but so can unexpected things, like a super comfy baby carrier and a snooze-inducing white noise machine. So to help you sort through the must-have options, we turned to the holy grail of motherhood that is buybuy BABY and handpicked 10 of the very best essential pieces that will change your life, we promise.

Keep reading Show less
Our Partners

Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Earth Mama: Effective, natural herbal care for mamas and babies

Founded and grown in her own garage in 2002, Earth Mama started as an operation of one, creating salves, tinctures, teas and soaps with homegrown herbs. With a deep desire to bring the healing powers of nature that have been relied on for thousands of years to as many mamas as possible, Melinda Olson's formulas quickly grew into Earth Mama Organics. Since then, the brand has remained committed to manufacturing clean, safe and effective herbal solutions for the entire journey of motherhood, including pregnancy, breastfeeding and baby care, and even the loss of a baby.

Bravado Designs: Soothing sounds for a good night's sleep

With 28 years of serving pregnant and postpartum mamas under their belt, Bravado Designs is a true authority on the needs of changing bodies. It's true that we have them to thank for rescuing us from the uncomfortable and frumpy designs our own moms had to live with. Launched in Canada by two young mamas, they designed the first prototypes with extra leopard print fabric certain that a better bra was possible. Throughout the years they've maintained their commitment to ethical manufacturing while creating long-lasting products that truly work.

The Sill: Instagram-ready potted plants

We've long admired this female-founded brand and the brilliant mind behind it, Eliza Blank. (She even joined Motherly co-founder Liz Tenety on and episode of The Motherly Podcast!) The mission behind the business was simple: To make the process of bringing plants into your home as easy as possible, and as wonderful as the plant themselves. With their in-house, exclusively designed minimalist planters, the end result makes plant parenthood just a few clicks away.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

Keep reading Show less

The 6 biggest lies I believed before having kids

Just about all of us had set assumptions about raising kids before we became parents ourselves.

Just about all of us had set assumptions about raising kids before we became parents ourselves. Some of these ideas might have been based on our own ideas of how we would absolutely do things differently than everyone else. Others, we believed what everyone else told us would happen would apply to our littles, too. But, that's not always the case, mama.

Below are six of the biggest lies I believed before having kids—and the reality of what actually happened for me.

1. Put your baby down drowsy, but awake

Keep reading Show less