40 answers

Something to Make My Daughter Drowsy?

OK, this might sound awful, but in anticipation of a trip overseas to visit family, which will last a grand total of approx 18 hours door to door, I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions on safe OTC meds I can give my 14 month old daughter to make her sleepy? The outbound trip might be better than the inbound since it's overnight, but I'm still VERY nervous. Thanks for any advice/suggestions you might have to offer.

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My friend uses Melaton XR 3 mg you can get it at wall greens give it 20 minutes before bed time.
good luck try it before you go just a suggestion

That is not a good idea. Very dangerous to even consider. Imagine what happens if she reacts poorly to a sedative which is very likely.

Drs. won't even sedate children this young for catheterizations!

How about trying something homeopathic?

Has she flown before?

I do NOT recommend Benedryl. It can have a reverse effect in young children making them hyper. We tried this on a plane trip when my son was about 20 months, and he was even crankier and more of a handful afterwards.

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Sometimes it is best to not ask other moms, but look to your pediatrician. I am so sorry for all the judgmental comments other mothers’ are making. I am a teacher and many of my friends are doctors and what you are asking is completely reasonable and I totally agree with you. MY pediatrician who is well respected in this city of Chicago recommended Benadryl, and she said it is perfectly safe for a child 6 months and older. Just ask your doctor for the safe amount based on weight not age. I wish you luck, and please don’t feel bad about asking this question; unfortunately many people have strong opinions and want to make people feel bad. We are a network of mother’s that should help each other not criticize.

3 moms found this helpful

If your doctor okays giving her something, please try it at home first. I had a child allergic to new medication his mom gave him for the first time on the plane. We were over the ocean when it happened. So please, please, try it at home a few days before leaving if you go this route.

At this age,some dvds, familiar snacks, a favorite blankie or stuffed animal are all musts for you to bring. I got some of the small PlayDoh packets and a few little cookie cutter things for my daughter when she was 16 mos. old, and she sat and played with it for a long time. Just watch her with it! A small Magna Doodle is good too. Or the Crayola Color Wonder products (I always kept these for outings only, we did not use at home, so they were always special).

I also got this little clear backpack and it had a small set of plastic dishes in it, and that kept my kids busy too.

Take her pjs or a comfy outfit (like a sweatsuit) to wear.

The hard part will be to keep her up once you get there, I assume like most flights you will arrive there in the morning, and then you will want her to stay up as long as you can to adjust her body clock, not sleep the day away.

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While many of the items that people will suggest eg. Benadryl will most of the time work out fine, in some instances they can have very bad reactions. In fact, the FDA and even the manufacturer say not to use on a child under age 2. here is a link to the consumer group that is petitioning for a ban of these products for all children under age 12 because of their ineffectiveness as cold remedies and their potential side effects that can in rare instances result in death (http://www.citizen.org/publications/release.cfm?ID=7599) I have done 5 trips to europe with my 20 month old ie from when she was 2 months old to now. In stead of drugging her, I would buy a portable dvd player or you could certainly borrow mine. I got one of the children's ones at Target. Normally, I don't let her watch any TV as the American Academy of Pediatrics advises against TV/DVD/computer for children until they are over the age of 2 but I make an exception for long flights. If I can, I bring her car seat with me and normally there are extra seats so I pop her in her car seat and entertain her with books and toys and food for the first while. I also let her run around the airport a good deal to try to tire her out. Something to suck on for takeoff and landing is good too. Then after a while, I turn on the DVD. Often she will fall asleep after an hour or two of Dora. Somehow it all works out and she arrives safely at our destination. Good luck and enjoy the trip.

1 mom found this helpful

I would avoid drugging your child. I have traveled lots with my 6 month old. Nurse nurse nurse! Bring a new toy or two and bring snacks and bottles too. Walking the aisle of the plane is a pretty popular thing to do with babies too. How about a sling too? Maybe there will be a free seat to stretch out on as well.

About the drugs : It's hard on their little bodies, especially their little livers and stomachs! My thinking is don't pollute their systems unless you have to! If you're in a panic though, please talk to your pediatrician about your concerns!

Embrace and accept that you'll both be a little tired. Not that big a deal and you'll both recover quick and with ZERO side effects!!!
Bon Voyage,


1 mom found this helpful

Just call your dr and ask what the apropriate dose for benadryl is. Don't even say why you're giving it to her. That way you can be sure it's as safe as possible. You might test it to see if it works before the trip (and make sure there is no negative reaction. Would people who are so opposed be opposed if it was given for a cold. What's the difference? As long as you don't do this regularly. You are not a bad parent for this. You are trying to make the trip pleasant for everyone.

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Perhaps to feel best about your question, consult a medical professional. Natural doesn't necessarily mean safe as the FDA doesn't monitor those products. Agreed that natural seems better, but keep in mind the safety aspect of that as well.

You might try to tire her out naturally. Walk her up and down the departure area, skip a nap if necessary. We have flown with my daughter on several long haul flights. There is no perfect solution. She might be tired, but as soon as you board that plane she will probably perk right up due to the "newness" of the environment. If you haven't already, you might explore the cost of her own seat. Everyone is more comfortable, except the person in front of you who can't put their seat back. It's worth it if you can afford it. Walk her up and down the aisles of the plane too - as long as it's not during when the flight attendants are doing their service functions.

Also, remember if she gets fussy, it's frustrating to you. You feel awful for her and the people on the plane, but the whole plane CANNOT hear her. It's fairly loud, so you are not alienating the entire plane. Not to mention most people have headphones on.

And to those who have responded to this: if you have to apologize in advance of your answer perhaps you should reframe your answer. Apologizing in advance does not make things right.

1 mom found this helpful

Some people are just WAY too judgmental, quick to attack and condemn. There is a way to relay an opinion without being mean. That being said, if you haven't ever given her Benadryl before (and I wouldn't in any case without her pediatrician's recommendation or permission), the flight would not the time to do so for the first time! There are risks, true, but there are also risks with any herbal remedies. As someone said below, just because it's "natural" doesn't mean it's any safer for your child then any OTC medication. Any child has the potential to have a reaction to any ingredient in ANYTHING. What I suggest is consult her pedi, and if there are particular things you are considering giving her, such as the Benadryl or any of the natural recommendations below, ask about those specific items (and as for the natural remedies, be sure to research exactly what's in it and give the info to the pedi, as he/she may not be familiar with the product).

I don't recommend you needlessly giving your child any drugs, but I do commend you for wanting the easiest flight possible, for you, your daughter AND the other passengers and flight staff! Arrive to the airport early, try to keep her awake for as long as possible beforehand, play with her to wear her out, fill her belly, and with luck those things will get her nice & tired and help her to sleep plenty on her own. (Also, as someone else suggested, a dose of Tylenol may stave off any crankiness, as well as helping with any ear pain.)

If there is something her pedi will approve, do give it to her on a day at least a week prior to the trip, so you can see how it affects her and if she has any adverse reactions. Even so, only give it to her as a last resort. Try other tactics to calm her first: toys, crayons, DVDs, books, snacks & drinks, etc.

We took our son on a three-hour flight when he was 9 months old, taking along Benadryl (which his pedi had already recommended to give him for mild sinus issues). We didn't need it. He slept through the entire outbound flight, and just sat calmly on my lap on the return flight. We couldn't have hoped for an easier trip. But a 12-15 hour flight? Who knows how he would have been? You know your child best, and what she can/can't handle, and have the best idea about how she's going to cope. I say expect the best, but prepare for the worst. (And don't let anyone make you feel like you are a bad mommy because you are trying to take everyone's comfort in mind.)

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Hi, T C...

From one Mom to another, I am quite sure that you would never look at giving your daughter something that was unsafe for her, hence your asking for something that was "safe". But, sometimes we just don't use the right words because we aren't exactly sure of what we are asking. With that said, what I believe will be a safe alternative to something that might drug your little one is for you to go to your local Fruitful Yield or nutrition store and purchase a bottle of something called "Rescue Remedy". It is a safe and natural product that comes in a little bottle with a dropper and you just follow the directions on the bottle and place drops under their tongue and it helps to CALM them, not drug them. It is made with flower essences and we have used this product safely for years now to give to our children prior to something happening that might cause them stress or anxiety---such as going to the dentist, or getting shots, etc. It won't make your little one drowsy, but it will bring a sense of calm and in the end it will be much safer. If you are flying at night, however, and you are looking to give her something to help her sleep better in her new surroundings, they have something called "Calms Forte" by Hylands and we have used that when we have taken trips and our 6 year old daughter would struggle sleeping in a different bed. It is also natural and safe.

Another thing to remember is that our children often times get stressed because they are picking up on our stress, so you might also want to take the drops yourself (anyone can take them) in order to bring a sense of calm to yourself so that you in turn don't cause your little one to feed off of your own anxiety.

I also agree (from experience) with the other Moms...pack her her very own "fun" bag with snacks, books, toys and things that you know, based upon her likes and personality, that you will be able to use to keep her entertained.

So, take a deep breath...pack the fun bag...give the drops to both you and your daughter and ENJOY your trip! :)

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