As many of our parents know, a concentrated solution of sucrose (table
sugar) has been shown to be a good pain reliever in newborns. It is
thought that sugar in high concentrations (25%) causes the release of
naturally occurring brain endorphins (chemical pain relievers) in the
very young. There is now fairly good evidence that higher
concentrations of sucrose (up to 75%) are quite effective even up to 12
months of age. The recipe that we use in the newborn nursery to prevent
pain from injections is one packet (5 grams) of sugar in 4 teaspoons of
water. This gives a 25% solution. We would be happy to administer
sucrose to your older infant in higher doses to prevent immunization
pain in the first year of life. The new recipe will be one packet of
sugar per 1.5 to 2 teaspoons of water.
The starting dose for all of the above recipes is 1 teaspoon every 3 hours as needed for pain.
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