Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Sniffles, snuffles and thank God for Calpol...

January seems to have been our month for the common cold. Poor R5 (pictured yesterday in a photograph set up and taken by H6) had a very snotty day, then a day of red and interesting rash, two days of complete exhaustion and then (yesterday) fierce earache.

Earache is something I well remember from my own childhood, except Calpol had not been invented in the early 1970s. I remember the awfulness of the pain and wanting to cry so much that, on one day I remember, Mum shut me into the living room on my own for my own safety while she went elsewhere and had a good scream about the injustice of a world which landed her with a small child with earache.

The medicine was fairly foul too. Mum used to take me to Dr Davies and I would sit on his knee, while he would say, before anything else was said: "Which ear?" It was usually the right one and I swear I still can't hear so well in that one now.

The medicine was yellow and gloopy and bitter and "lemon flavour" and was dosed with a big tube shaped spoon. I hated it and can also remember dangling off the banisters to avoid a dose of the foul liquid.

Calpol, on the other hand, is strawberry flavoured and smells sweet and sickly. R5 can be trusted to know when it is needed too. If you offer her Calpol at any other time, she won't have it. There has to be a certain level of pain. Yesterday the ear pain (and yes, it was the right one) was so severe that the Calpol paracetamol was only lasting for two of the four hours between doses. Calpol ibuprofen was therefore required in between times. This doubling up of dosing scares me, but it's on medical advice and was exactly what they did one time we took her to the surgery. In fact the medicine is the same one they gave us on prescription.

Two doses of each took us to the evening and then bedtime when she snored solidly for 12 hours, woke up and demanded to be taken to school. God bless Calpol.


  1. Poor little sausage - earache is absolutely miserable. Hope R is fully recovered soon. Sounds as if you've had more than your fair share of trauma in that dept too.

    (Still a car-free zone... fiesta now being done tomorrow. Maybe!)

  2. Feeling a bit like a copycat here Mags, but I have two children who have had ear problems most of their lives and it is grim. I understand how your Mum felt! The mixed dosing is scary but a godsend for the pain aspect. My hearing is bad because of childhood infections, but I only notice it now and then. TV is usually when I struggle, but seem ok with 'real' people! xx

  3. Amazing how they bounce back isn't it, but as you say, thankfully we now have Calpol. So glad R is better now. My elder son (now aged 48) suffered incredible earaches whenever he returned to school after each holiday, half-term as well. By the time he was six, our excellent doctor recommended he had his tonsils out; he hasn't looked back since.

  4. Poor thing! My son had ear ache when he was a child and it was just awful. thankfully calpol had been invented!

  5. Ah bless her, I hope she is better now? My two used to get ear infections when they were small. Calpol is a blessing indeed.

  6. Calpol is maguc stuff - don't know how our parents coped without it. Glad she's better (although that photo looks like the advert on TV for either Calpol or Nurofen medicine, where the supposedly poorly children are swinging from the chandeliers and generally causing mayhem!).

  7. Gosh yes - absolutely one of the worst pains to have, along with toothache. Calpol is magic stuff. I still wonder whether the half a cooked onion clamped to the ear actually works, but nowt to be lost next time perhaps . . .

    I can remember having a really long journey to make to Granny's up in Manchester when the girls were little and fractious with a cold, and I'm afraid Bad Mummy gave them Calpol before we started and they slept nearly all the way . . . Ahem . . .

  8. Oh poor little darling, I do hope that your daughter is feeling much better. Earache is horrid, Calpol was not around when I had my children, but I know my daughter thinks it is brilliant stuff for when my two grandchildren have been poorly.


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