So which genius decided to make medicine for newborn babies bright orange?

(Sorry, another baby post - I’m turning into one of them…)

My 5-week-old daughter has to take penicillin for the next two months. For some reason, the baby penicillin mix has not one but two artifical colourings in it to make it a dayglo shade of orange.

Did nobody stop to consider for a moment that babies are not the cleanest of eaters, and tend to dribble and/or puke on a fairly regular basis? And that said food colourings don’t easily wash out of baby clothes? And that, frankly, babies couldn’t give a runny artificially-colour-enhanced shit what their medicine looks like (and even if they did, tough, cos they’re getting it squirted down their gullets regardless!)

If anyone asks, orange shoulder patches are very in this season. :rolleyes:

I always thought they did that so that you could more easily tell if the kid spit all the medicine out or not. If it’s clear-colored (they do make clear Tylenol for babies) it looks pretty much like regular drool.

I recommend getting a few of those six-packs of cheap onesies and just leaving the baby in those as much as possible.

I hadn’t considered that possibility. A more subtle colouring (and a more water soluble one!) might serve the same purpose, though. Quite apart from that, without wanting to be a fussy parent, do they really need to put azo dyes in this stuff? In particular E124 which is banned in some countries. I’m sure I took plenty of this stuff as a kid, and it didn’t do me any harm, but there’s no need for it.

The same people who add red or brown food coloring to cat food, so it leaves stains on your carpet when there’s hork that sits for more than a minute.

We had to give our daughter something that was both 1) dark brown 2) smelled foul. (I don’t recall the circumstances anymore.) You could smell it a mile away. I’d clamp my mouth shut too! I’d gag just smelling it. I’m surprised we ever got any down her throat at all.

Maybe so it’s so recognizable as your child’s medicine, to prevent you from accidentally dosing her with something prescribed for you, your wife, or your dog. It makes it more difficult as an exhausted parent to accidentally poison your child. It seems smart to me.


Poly-vi-sol. Multivitamins for babies - count your blessings, though, because that was just the standard kind. The fancy kind with iron is black like ink and can be smelled across the room just by opening the bottle. Nothing like baby drool that looks like they ate a squid.

The carpet people do that, right?


I don’t know about you, but I and most literate people on the planet look at the label before taking medicine, or giving it to a child.

I find that a much more reliable way of identifying what’s in it than giving it the Pantone test.

My daughter had oral thrush when she was a month old, and her medicine was orange too. The stains came right out in the wash, though.

Strained carrots on the other hand…

Back in the 60s my mom used to sort out any medications on the top of her dresser by who took it in small labeled cardboard boxes. There was enough of a size/age difference between my brother and I that our doses were quite different. She also had measuring spoons for the liquid meds.

Today, I have one entire drawer in my bedside table [it is a kitchen rolling drawer unit from IKEA that we thought made great bedside tables] that is nothing but my personal medications, and mrAru keeps his in his bedside table. I sort my meds and OTC suppliments into a pill box. Mine is in english, but I think I would love to find one in japanese or arabic =)

[personally if I ended up winning a lottery I would find a compounding pharmacy that would combine the active ingredients of my meds into a single pill wherever possible to reduce the sheer number of pills I have to hork down 4x day. I don’t care to have all the bulking agents, I could care less if all my pills were tiny. I do not confuse size with potency. Hell, I was given elavil once and those pills are tiny!

Well, in an exhausted rush, it’s easy to make mistakes. Even hospitals make mistakes. I take a white thyroid supplement, and sometimes generic Ambien to sleep. I did mix them up once. It was a hard day’s work trying to fight off the sleep.


I guess everyone’s mind works differently. I find it much easier to remember the name rather than associating the colour with it. But then I also find those so-called “memory aids” totally counterproductive: you know, “turn the series of cards into a story” or whatever. Much easier to just remember a series of numbers!

Most kids’ liquid medicine is flavored in an attempt to get the kids to drink it all down. I’ve had to give my daughter a LOT of Amoxicillin when she was a baby. I could tell whether she was drinking it or if it was re-emerging because it was a bright pink.

I’ve also had to dose cats with both liquids and pills. Now, when old Shadow cat gets yet another UTI, I ask the vet if he will please just give Shadow a shot. Shadow DOES NOT like pills, or liquids. He also doesn’t like to be chased. Hell, he doesn’t even like to be held! So shots are the way to go for cats, and possibly small children who tend to spit the medicine right back out.

Yeah, this. I want as many safeguards as possible when I might have to give (or take) the medicine when I’ve had about 3 hours sleep in the past 58 hours.