Baby, Body

Suppository Strife: Can’t Get the Little Fecker to Stay Put??

This post, inspired by a tweet by Louise McSharry, got us thinking about where we’re going wrong when administering medication to wily babies.

All too familiar… They do it just to spite us.

Oral Medication: The firstborn was absolutely horrendous when taking Calpol from a syringe – bucking, spitting, heaving, full blown vomming etc just led to us resorting to Paralink suppositories. Child no. 2 is a different kettle of fish, there are occasions where suppositories aren’t an option so we had to change tack.

We’ve (gently) pinned her down, held her nose, squished her cheeks – nothing worked. And then I saw a nurse in Tallaght hospital glide in an entire dose into the then 5-month-old in one go – in the space of about 10 seconds. Here’s how…

1) Show child the soother, bottle, or nipple and place near the left-hand-side of their mouth.
2) Let them open their mouth to go for it on one side, and quickly squeeze in a few mils of medication on the right-hand-side.
3) Just as they cop what’s going on, pop the soother, bottle or nipple into their mouth for a few seconds to placate.
4) Repeat until the medicine is gone.

Obviously if the child is a wily toddler, you may have to just bribe them with something instead. Hey, I know it’s “not good parenting” but – feck it – whatever works.

Rectal Medication
Oh, the glamour. Anyway, we had absolutely no problem popping them in to the firstborn; we just laid her on her back, hoisted the knees up with one arm and inserted the bullet with the other hand. Keeping the legs hoisted for about ten seconds after and holding the buttocks closed generally did the trick.

Again, the baby is different. We’re not sure if its the size of her posterior, the shape of it, it’s trajectory, or what, but the little feckers just won’t stay up there. The problem is, we were doing just what we did before, but every baby is different.

With that in mind, here are the general guidelines.

1) Firstly, if your chosen bum torpedo is a bit on the soft side, run it under some cold water while it’s still in its wrapper.
2) Obviously making sure your fingers are clean, some say it’s “best to lie a child on it’s side, in the recovery position” (because all children comply and lie completely still when required… both legs hoisted all the way ) and pop it up, aiming towards the belly button.
3) It only needs to be in about 1/2 – 1 inch; any deeper and it’ll either fly back out, or create an unfortunate explosion. Anyone else been there? C’mere to me, you deserve a virtual hug.
4) Once it’s inserted, hold the child’s buttocks closed for about 10 seconds and “encourage them to stay lying down for at least 15 minutes”. That last statement must have been written by someone who’s never met someone under the age of 6.
5) This is where we were going seriously wrong. When using half a suppository, don’t just break the torpedo in half widthways; it needs to be cut lengthwise.

Both children have been subjected to jagged shards of suppositories protruding out of their posteriors – if only we’d known it was mean to be lengthways! Or read the fecking leaflet thoroughly. But, Jesus, who has time for that.

3 thoughts on “Suppository Strife: Can’t Get the Little Fecker to Stay Put??”

  1. Great article. The most down to earth I have read so far on suppositories. Any advice though on getting the “torpedo” to cut in half without crumbling and wasting the other half???


    1. I know, it’s such a waste isn’t it… What I’ve done in the past (but not sure it’s recommended) is warm the remaining half on a saucer and place a warm eggcup over it for about 15-20 seconds to soften the leftover half, then it should be just soft enough to shape it into another little torpedo – although I did find myself doing that once and thinking “so this is what counts as a hobby now…” If only they had suppository shaped ice cube moulds…


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