As They Grow: Teaching Your Children How To Use Medicines Safely
adapted from the United States Pharmacopeia)
As parents and guardians, you have the important jobs of protecting your children from harm and of teaching them to make good choices as they grow and become adults. At a young age, start talking to your children about medicines and how you make medicine decisions for yourself and for them. This teaches children how to use medicines safely and correctly and to avoid harm from misuse of medicines. It also encourages them to ask questions about medicines and medicine decisions.
Sometimes your child may ask you a question for which you have no answer. This is a great chance to show your child that it is okay to ask health professionals for advice about medicines – health professionals, like doctors and pharmacists, are there to help you and your family make smart medicine and health choices.
This table suggests the kinds of information you should share with your children about medicines at different ages. Every child is different, so your child may be ready for some of these ideas a little earlier or a little later than the age suggested here.