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Mind over medicine

Five common misconceptions parents make when it comes to giving remedies to a sick child

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As far as children are concerned, to medicate or not to medicate is the big question. When it comes to the health of their offspring, the worry for parents is sometimes overwhelming. With so many in-your-face ad campaigns promoting health insurance for children, parents who have signed up for such plans often think they should "maximise" the benefits by taking their child to hospital every time they so much as suspect an illness. Many doctors in this country are inclined to prescribe remedies for the mildest symptoms and if this happens often enough the excessive medication can have negative effects on a youngster's health. 

While taking an incorrect dose or other improper use of over-the-counter medicine can be harmful for adults, it can be potentially fatal for very young children, warned Dr Terapong Boonyaleephun, a Bangkok-based paediatrician. He pointed out five common mistakes that parents make regarding the treatment of their kids' illnesses with drugs.

MEDICINE IS THE BEST ANSWER

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