A-Z Health Topics

Return to Index
by Woods M

Giving Ibuprofen to Your Child

momandchild The doctor has recommended a medication called ibuprofen for your child. Be sure that you read and understand the information below before giving your child this medication.

What Is This Medication For?

Ibuprofen is used to relieve pain, inflammation, and fever.

How Much Medication Do I Give?

The amount of medication you give your child will depend on weight or age. Below are suggested dosages. Make sure to check the amount of medication in the liquid or tablet before giving the dose. Follow the instructions on the actual medication label for the latest dosage information. Some brands may come in different concentrations, so make sure you read the label closely. Talk to the doctor if you are unsure of how much medication to give your child.
Total Dose You Need to Give Your Child If using infant drops (50 mg/1.25 ml), you will need to give your child… If using liquid medication (100 mg/5 ml), you will need to give your child… If using Junior tablets (100 mg per pill), you will need to give your child…
6-11 months
12-17 pounds (5-8 kg)
50 mg
1.25 ml
12-23 months
18-23 pounds (8-10 kg)
75 mg
1.875 ml
2-3 years
24-35 pounds (11-16 kg)
100 mg
5 ml (1 teaspoon)
1 tablet
4-5 years
36-47 pounds (16-21 kg)
150 mg
7.5 ml (1.5 teaspoons)
1.5 tablets
6-8 years
48-59 pounds (22-27 kg)
200 mg
10 ml (2 teaspoons)
2 tablets
9-10 years
60-71 pounds (27-32 kg)
250 mg
12.5 ml (2.5 teaspoons)
2.5 tablets
11 years
72-95 pounds (33-43 kg)
300 mg
15 ml (3 teaspoons)
3 tablets
kg=kilogram; mg=milligram; ml=milliliter
Dose may be given every 6-8 hours. Do not give more than 4 doses within 24 hours.
For children less than 6 months old: Ask the doctor for dosing instructions.
For children 12 years old or older: Give 200 mg every 4-6 hours. If needed, you can increase the dose to 400 mg every 4-6 hours.

Are There Side Effects?

Possible side effects include:

What Else Should I Know Before Giving My Child This Medication?

Talk to the doctor first to make sure you understand how to give the medication to your child. Also, let your doctor know if your child is taking any other medications.

How Should I Store This Medication?

Store the medication at 68°F-77°F (20°C-25°C) in a place that is free from moisture and light. Make sure that the medication is locked and not accessible to any children.

When Should I Call A Doctor?

Call the doctor if your child has:
  • Signs of a serious allergic reaction:
    • Wheezing
    • Chest tightness
    • Fever
    • Itching
    • Bad cough
    • Blue skin color
    • Convulsions
    • Swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • New or worsening stomach pain
  • Swelling or pain in the hands or feet
  • Change in speech or vision
  • Eye pain or irritation
  • Black, tarry, or bloody stools
  • Blood in urine
  • Diarrhea
  • Strange bruising or bleeding
  • Rash
Also, call the doctor if your child feels worse or the condition does not improve.
If you think your child may have overdosed, go to the emergency room or call your local poison control center right away.


American Pharmacists Association Foundation
US Food and Drug Administration


Canadian Pharmacists Association
Health Canada


How to safely give ibuprofen. Kids Health—Nemours Foundation website. Available at: http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/ibuprofen.html. Updated March 2015. Accessed May 3, 2017.
Ibuprofen. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T233086/Ibuprofen. Updated April 11, 2017. Accessed May 2, 2017.
Motrin dosing charts for children and infants. Motrin website. Available at: https://www.motrin.com/children-infants/dosing-charts. Accessed May 4, 2017.
Up and up junior strength ibuprofen—ibuprofen tablet, chewable. DailyMed—National Library of Medicine website. Available at: https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=6acd5878-35b6-452a-b00b-a69467a7c8f2. Accessed May 4, 2017.

Revision Information