36 answers

Is Benadryl Ok to Give My 1 Year Old to Help Her Sleep?

ok here is my issue...I am traveling in a car with my daughter on a 15 hour trip. We are leaving at night time so she can sleep through the night, however I worry that gas stops and lights may wake her up or keep her from falling asleep. I have heard from lots of people that if they have a hard time getting there children to sleep they just give them benadryl. Has anyone done this? is this ok? what kind should I get?I know its not a everyday thing, and my daughter never has a problem sleeping, but I want to make sure she gets a good nights rest for her sake and mine. Its a looong drive. Please help, Im leaving tomorrow the 30th! any suggestions would be great!

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So What Happened?™

ok...well we made the trip and we survived as I knew we would. I decided not to give my daughter anything, she was fine for the most part. A little cranky in the beginning and end of trip but overall she slept great. 3 hours, then we stopped for gas and she woke right up, I took her out to walk around a bit, then put a sleepy dvd on for her and she fell asleep within 15 minutes and slept for 5 hours. She also slept a bit in the morning. I should of trusted my gut instincts anyways but just thought I would ask some other mothers to see what they do. So thankyou for all your advice. I really am not one to give my daughter medicines she doesn't need. And I did not want to "drug" her as some of you say for my sake. some of you made me feel pretty bad and I didn't even give her the medicine. So please remember we come on here for advice, but that doesn't mean your advice is right. So please don't make other mothers feel bad. We all try to do the best for our children. And most of you were very kind with your advice, but others were not. So to all the advice that was given in a kind manner thank you very much. Its nice to get someone elses point of view in some matters. Now we just need to get home! So thanks again! It helped me alot and made me realize my gut was right.

Featured Answers

I have traveled extensively across the USA by CAR & Plane with my children when they were small and older. I NEVER gave them any drugs, and we did just fine. The motion of the car was enough to put them to sleep easily.

When they were awake we entertained them with finger foods,juice,and favorite toys etc...A video works well to with a portable video/DVD player:)
A few stops to let them run about in a play-land as a treat went over well too.

I would NOT recommend any meds UNLESS DOCTOR OK'S FIRST> You could overdose you child by accident with tragic consequences.

1 mom found this helpful

Try "Rescue Remedy" It does contain alcohol but Benadryl is more toxic. I don't like to take it myself, so I never gave it to my children.

yes but ask a doc how much, I know it is less than 1/2 a pill at least DRIVER GETS NONE SEE IF THERE IS ANY ON THE SHELF FOR BABIES

More Answers

As I am a family wellness coach, I completely disagree with giving meds so that she will sleep. Medication should be used sparingly at the worst of times, espcially on children. Using meds to help her sleep is NOT a good idea.

Here's the thing, if more women trusted their instincts they would be far more confident moms. If you THOUGHT it was a good idea, you wouldn't have asked us. You are looking for permission to medicate your child to make your trip easier. I say no, it is not alright

3 moms found this helpful

Absolutely not. do you know how many children have massive complications from reactions to drugs? many say Benadryl is safe in small doses for Allergic reactions, not long road trips. they've pulled all pediatric medicines from Over the Counter... why would you give your baby something that a)she doesnt need for a medical reason, and b) is not intended for her in the first place? i dont mean to sound harsh especially if this is your first child and you have no experience whatsoever wiht any children ever in your life, but its really a matter of common sense. PS most kids tend to sleep through long car rides unless they are very hyperactive naturally. she may wake up and be cranky - guess what after every couple of hours you're going to have to wake her up anyway to change her pamper anyway arent you? or at least check it? please dont introduce anything into your daughter's system just because you dont want to deal wiht her crankiness. when i have an issue like that i let her eat whatever she wants and make a huge mess, which is totally NOT allowed in the car (per my husband.) when its a long road trip i buy them snacks (nothing sweet of course that will keep her up) and juices and bring some toys. fill her up with FOOD and she will pass out. for one day will not her or you... and you wont be drugging your kid for lack of a better word.

3 moms found this helpful

No. Intentionally drugging your child for the convenience of not having to listen to her during your car ride is not ok in my opinion. Do you really expect her to sleep the full 15 hours?
Being a parent is full of inconveniences. I suggest a more natural approach such as feeding her a warm bottle (or cup) of milk. Darkening her carseat area. Remaining quiet during the ride. You may be surprised at how well she sleeps. Even if she does wake up and not loses one good nights rest, she has a lifetime to make up that sleep loss. Sorry if this sounds harsh, but it is an opinion board, and this is my thought on the subject.

2 moms found this helpful

Hey T.,
Let me start telling you I am a mother of two boys and they are complete opposites; one a sleeper and one that just is NOT! I have traveled with my boys to Michigan several times and I know how long road trips can be. My opinion on the Benadryl is, why put something in your babies body it does not need? If she needs sleep, her body will tell her it is time and night driving is a great idea! When you will be stopping for gas, just use a blanket or towel to cover her eyes and leave on the radio to continue sound, she may wake a little, just continue as if she were sleeping and she will not be stimulated by anyone talking to her and will fall back to sleep. It will be ok and best of all you won't have to worry if she is going to have a reaction to the Benadryl or have a "hang over" from it and be fussy and more tired then if she just slept naturally. Benadryl can be dangerous and is not worth the risk!!

2 moms found this helpful

I have traveled extensively across the USA by CAR & Plane with my children when they were small and older. I NEVER gave them any drugs, and we did just fine. The motion of the car was enough to put them to sleep easily.

When they were awake we entertained them with finger foods,juice,and favorite toys etc...A video works well to with a portable video/DVD player:)
A few stops to let them run about in a play-land as a treat went over well too.

I would NOT recommend any meds UNLESS DOCTOR OK'S FIRST> You could overdose you child by accident with tragic consequences.

1 mom found this helpful

Oh PLEASE don't EVER give any child medicine that they don't absolutley need! Our bodies have to work so hard to remove the toxins that come along with all the meds! She may suprise you and sleep anyway, or may wake up for the first few and then sleep through after that. You never know and that's just part of travelling with young children.Have a safe trip!

1 mom found this helpful

If your daughter generally does not have trouble sleeping, then she should be able to sleep in the car. That is a long drive for a child to not fall asleep on her own. She may want to look at the lights for a while and be kept up by gas stops but, I would think she would eventually fall asleep.
I would not give her benadryl. So not worth the risk. It is just one night of not so great sleep. And she may do great on her own. I always listen to my pediatrician and the warnings about giving benadryl to a baby. There are reasons why their are warnings and I would never take that chance even though your daughter would probably be just fine.
Also, trips can often throw babies off in general. They don't always nap or sleep as well. Happens to my baby everytime. But, when we get back from the trip, things slowly get back to normal. That is the price we pay for taking trips with them! But, sometimes we just have to get away!!
Good luck and skip the benadryl.

1 mom found this helpful

I know you have a ton of responses already, but please don't give her something to make her sleep. She will conk out on her own. Believe me. And if she wakes up a couple of times, well, find a spot to stop, change her diaper, let her walk around a few minutes (if she is walking already.. if not, then a few minutes to climb around inside the car and stretch some) and you can get up and stretch your legs too. Just be careful that if you let her climb around in the car that once she is back in her seat, double check the seat belt buckle that holds the car seat in the car. One trip we went on, my little boy undid it without us knowing while he was climbing around at one of our stops and we didn't know it was unhooked until we were asked to pull over by a cop at a driver's license checkpoint. We had no idea why we were being asked to pull over, but the officer was very nice about asking if we realized... obviously we didn't. But I became vigilant about checking it after that.
Trust me though, until she is closer to 4 years old, her NOT falling asleep on a car ride shouldn't be a problem. Please don't medicate her hoping to make your ride easier. You shouldn't have to stop more than once every 3 hours or so, and you could probably use a stretch yourself, or a potty stop, at those intervals...

1 mom found this helpful

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