It's a bitter pill for some parents to swallow: over-the-counter cold medicines for children under 6 do more harm than good. That's the word from an FDA advisory panel, which recommended in October that pediatric cold and cough products not be used for the 0-to-5 age group, citing doubts about the stuff's effectiveness and safety. There is no evidence that kids' cold syrups and tablets treat symptoms. And accidental overdosing, which can occur when more than one medication is used, is too easy. While the panel voted 21 to 1 for avoiding such products for children under 2, the vote was closer for children ages 2 to 5. There's no guarantee that the FDA will follow the panel's recommendation. In the meantime, there's always chicken soup.
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