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03/16/2005

WWM: Woman wastes medication

Ladies and gentlemen, we have another entry in the World's Worst Mother contest!

The Prevacid we give Charlie comes in what they call solutabs — tablets that are supposed to dissolve instantly on the tongue. Because an infant can't be trusted to wait compliantly while producing the necessary tide of saliva, we're supposed to dissolve the tablet in water, then give the whole watery mess to Charlie by bottle or dropper.

When the tab is dissolved, most of it disintegrates, leaving the water spiked with what I am told is a delectable strawberry sweetness. The active ingredients remain visible, tiny orange beads that sink to the bottom of the mixing vessel. It is those we must get into Charlie.

So we use the medicine dropper, carefully positioning it to suck up as many beads as possible with as little water ditto. We hold the dropper vertically, waiting for the beads to sink down to the business end, and insinuate said business end into Charlie's mouth, which he has obligingly opened like a hungry baby bird. He sucks on the dropper, we squeeze the bulb, and the medicine is gradually introduced into his mouth and thereafter his gullet.

With me so far?

Today Paul took apart the dropper to wash it thoroughly. I usually just give the open end a wash in hot water; he, more fastidious, removed the bulb. And what do you think he found?

An orange muck of medicine beads, beads Charlie should have gotten, left instead in the dropper.

If you incline the dropper while it's full — say, to keep it from dripping out while you wait for the ravenous baby bird to open his tiny pink maw — the medicine runs into the bulb..and does not run out again.

Our baby was hurting because I'd held the dropper wrong.

World's. Worst. Mother. Winnah and champeen!

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