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Infant Acetaminophen and SyringeAs I mentioned in my post on Ear Infections, I like to use Acetaminophen occasionally to help keep noses running and to keep them from becoming a stuffy nose (which can lead to ear infections).

If you check out the children’s pain relief section of your local pharmacy, you will probably see three choices in the infant pain relievers: Infants’ TYLENOL® Oral Suspension, Little Remedies® Infant Fever/Pain Reliever and a store brand version (I will use CVS Infants Pain Relief Liquid – Cherry as my example, but ingredients do vary somewhat among store brands).

Ingredients: Some Better Than Others

All three products will have the same active ingredient: Acetaminophen 160 mg in each 5 mL. The differences become apparent when you compare the inactive ingredients.

  • Tylenol (Grape Flavor): anhydrous citric acid, butylparaben, D&C red no. 33, FD&C blue no. 1, flavors, glycerin, high fructose corn syrup, microcrystalline cellulose and carboxymethylcellulose sodium, propylene glycol, purified water, sodium benzoate, sorbitol solution, sucralose, xanthan gum
  • Tylenol (Cherry Flavor): anhydrous citric acid, butylparaben, FD&C red no. 40, flavors, glycerin, high fructose corn syrup, microcrystalline cellulose and carboxymethylcellulose sodium, propylene glycol, purified water, sodium benzoate, sorbitol solution, sucralose, xanthan gum
  • Little Remedies (Natural Berry): Citric acid, glycerin, natural flavors, potassium sorbate, povidone, propylene glycol, purified water, sodium citrate, sucralose, sucrose and xanthan gum.
  • CVS (Cherry Flavor): Anhydrous Citric Acid, Butylparaben, Calcium Sulfate, Carrageenan, FD&C Red 40, Flavor, Glycerin, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Hydroxyethyl Cellulose, Microcrystalline Cellulose and Carboxymethylcellulose Sodium, Propylene Glycol, Purified Water, Sodium Benzoate, Sorbitol Solution, Tribasic Sodium Phosphate.

As you can see, there are quite a few similarities between the Tylenol version and the CVS brand version. There are also quite a few differences between the two and the Little Remedies version. The two main differences are in the sweeteners and the food coloring.

Sweeteners: Please Not High Fructose Corn Syrup

Sugar in a BowlThe Tylenol product has both high fructose corn syrup and sucralose. The Little Remedies product has both sucralose and sucrose. The CVS product uses only High Fructose Corn Syrup.

The dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) are heavily debated. Many sources indicate, such as this one from Huffington Post, that our bodies do not process HFCS the same was as table sugar which can lead to an increase in diabetes.

I don’t know if there is enough HFCS in a dose of Acetaminophen to make a huge difference, but I feel there is compelling enough evidence to try to avoid as much HFCS as possible. Therefore if there is an alternative product that does not contain HFCS, that will generally be my preference.

I am not thrilled that the Little Remedies product has sucralose in it as newer studies are showing it as being less and less safe, but I have yet to find an infant Acetaminophen that only has sucrose (or normal table sugar) as the only ingredient. If you know of one, please let me know in the comments section below.

Artifical Food Coloring / Dye: Color Me Purple

Both the Tylenol product and the CVS product have artificial food coloring. When you look at the liquid, it will be either purple (grape) or pink (cherry). One of the most readily observable concerns with artificial colors, especially Red #40, is that it seems to cause hyperactivity in children. The concerns are described in more detail on this page by the Center for Science in the Public Interest, but I have observed this effect in my own children as well as in other children.

Little Remedies is artificial color / dye free. The color of the liquid itself is a faint beige color. The additional benefit of not having any dye is that when your kid dribbles a little bit out, that it doesn’t stain the clothes.

So What Do I Recommend

So despite a few misgivings about the sucralose, I currently recommend and use Little Remedies Acetaminophen.

The 2 oz. Infant version comes with a syringe dispenser. The 4 oz. Children’s version comes with a cup, but still has the syringe accepting lid. So if you have kids young enough that you need the syringe, I recommend that you get the infant version the first time, keep the syringe, and get the large bottle Children’s version the next time. It has the same active ingredient of Acetaminophen 160 mg in each 5 mL.

I have included amazon.com ‘shop now’ boxes with current pricing for both products to the right. The Infant version is the image on the top and the Children’s version is the image on the bottom.

For additional savings per oz. on the infant version, there is a two pack available through the same infant product link. However once you have the syringe, you can see that there is definite cost savings by using the Children’s version. For additional savings, the Children’s version is available via Amazon Subscribe and Save for an additional 5-15% off.

If you decide to buy from amazon, please buy by clicking on one of my affiliate links. Thanks!

Amanda is the founder of Survival With Kids. She is the mother of 4 kids (two boys and two girls). She became a brain cancer widow in April of 2017 at the age of 32. She writes about surviving and preparing for unexpected events.

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A few weeks ago my youngest, G, woke up in the middle of the night and wouldn’t go back to sleep. Since he was crying pretty loudly, I took him out to the living room and sat down with him, intending to rock, in the recliner. He would not relax, sitting straight up in my lap, just yelling inconsolably.

Finally I remembered what my mom had always told me, that the only time we kids ever woke up inconsolable was when we had an ear infection. Ugh, no mom’s favorite middle of the night realization.

Between pregnant brain and G having had only maybe 2 ear infections before, I was a little slow to realize that was probably the issue for his recent irritableness. It is spring in Oklahoma and all kinds of random things have started blooming.

So I turned to our favorite natural ear infection remedy: Mullein Garlic Oil. I put a few drops in each ear and we sat back down to rock. Within 10 minutes, he was calm. He was finally able to relax and lay his head down on my shoulder. I took this as my cue to head back to the bedroom where we were able to go back to sleep.

Ear infections are pretty much the bane of most parent’s existence. There is nothing worse than an inconsolable kid, especially in the middle of the night. We have quite a few techniques that we use to try to prevent infections, both on a routine basis and at the first sign of the common cold symptoms, such as a runny nose.

Bottle of ProbioticsProbiotic Supplements: For The Whole Family

Probiotics are one of the few supplements that we give our kids every day. We went through several children’s probiotic supplements and the only one that my kids like well enough to take every day is the Rainbow Light Probiolicious Gummies. See my post My Top 4 Best Probiotics for Kids for a few other great options.

One of the things I like best about this product is that no refrigeration is required so we can keep them in the medicine cabinet with the other vitamins. It does not contain a huge amount of probiotics, but it is enough for an everyday supplement for my kids.

I personally take a higher-potency probiotic. See my post 5 Best Probiotics For Adults for what I recommend and use myself. If for some reason my kids needed to use antibiotics, I would probably break open one of my capsules and put it in a drink for them to replenish their good bacteria more quickly.

Chiropractic Adjustment: Get Straightened Out

In general, one of the things my chiropractor preaches is that chiropractic adjustment helps the immune system work more efficiently. If the body isn’t having to work around a misalignment, then it can heal itself better. I have definitely found this to be true.

At the first sign of cold symptoms, we go to the chiropractor and get that person’ neck adjustment and almost every time, their nose starts running like crazy before we leave the office. One of the best ways to keep infection away is to keep the nose running.

Acetaminophen: Not The Most Natural, But Effective

I have found that just plain acetaminophen helps to prevent ear infections. I do not use this once there is a fever involved, even though it is advertised as a fever reducer. I want to let the body fight the infection naturally. When I use this is when someone has had a runny nose and is starting to get ‘stuffed up’. I give a little bit of acetaminophen in order to get their nose running again. My preferred product for my kids the Little Remedies brand version. I like that it is paraben, dye and gluten free. See my review: Why I Use Little Remedies Acetaminophen.

As I mentioned above, keeping the nose running really seems to help prevent infection. If anyone has a more natural (and preferably a renewable or easily stocked up on) suggestion to replace using acetaminphen, please drop me a note in the comments section at the end of the post.

Natural Allergy Elimination Techniques: Less Tissues Needed

One of the longer term strategies we strongly credit with reducing the number of ear infections that we get in the first place is the elimination of most of our allergies. We are fortunate to have a very reasonably priced NAET practitioner in our city.

It is one of the craziest techniques to try to describe, so I’ll let you read about it on their website, but we started going for allergy treatments about 6 years ago and the number of ear infections my kids (and myself) get has dropped dramatically. The incident I described at the beginning of my post was only the second or third time G has had an ear infection and he is getting ready to turn 2 later this month. He had his first allergy treatment at the age of 4 weeks.

I personally used to get at least two ear infections per year due to seasonal allergies. I haven’t had one in at least three years now. It really has been such a blessing to reduce all of our seasonal allergies.

Contents in a bottle of Mullein Garlic OilMullein Garlic Oil: Smell Like A Salad

So far I have focused on ear infection prevention, but now I want to talk a little more about the treatment that I mentioned at the beginning of my post.

A few year ago, my chiropractor (and some internet research) finally convinced me that antibiotics were not usually the best treatment for an ear infection. But what was I supposed to do instead? My chiropractor suggested Mullein Garlic Oil. All I had to do was put the drops in his ear twice per day until the infection was gone.

I have since used it myself when I felt congested and my ear started hurting. The pain really did go away within 10 minutes. I would normally link to the product that I use, but it seems to be a store brand and isn’t available online. The picture to the left has the list of ingredients so you can track down a similar product.

There You Have It

Now you know the techniques we use to prevent and treat ear infections. I feel that preventing ear infections is one of the most important preparations we can do and think we have a good start on that. If we relied heavily on antibiotics the way we used to, it would be tough if we were in a society where antibiotics were not readily available anymore.

I would love to hear how you treat ear infections naturally. Please leave me a note in the comments section below.

Amanda is the founder of Survival With Kids. She is the mother of 4 kids (two boys and two girls). She became a brain cancer widow in April of 2017 at the age of 32. She writes about surviving and preparing for unexpected events.

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