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Drugging Kids on Flights

Drugging Kids on Flights

Would you sedate your child on a flight? 
Are parents who do, wrong?

A Wall Street Journal  article  reported that many parents “drug” or sedate their kids on planes so they’ll be less bothersome for the parents, flight attendants and fellow passengers.
The “drug” of choice seems to be Benadryl, and while it does calm kids, often putting them out for hours, it has awakened others to what might be an abusive practice.

The testy responses to an  (and other) postings on the subject suggest the issue is a “hot button” one. It also revealed that many parents give some sort of sedation to their children whenever they fly.
But, it turns out, many others said they never would, and that doing so is a failure in parenting, an inability to creatively help a child adjust to air travel.

The medical profession seems to have no solid opinion on the matter. One past chairman of the American Academy of Pediatrics, says his organization doesn’t have an actual position on the issue. “Good doctors can disagree about this,” he says, “just as good parents can.”
But one pediatrician who did not want to be quoted has a very strong opinion.

He points out that the dangers of giving children Benadryl include actually making kids more irritable and hyper, throwing them off their schedules and inducing an unpleasant grogginess. He asks,”What if Benadryl doesn’t work? Would parents give their kids something stronger like Valium? agrees, saying that kids can do just fine on planes if parents take the time to bring along the right distractions like toys, games, or DVDs.
It’s easy to argue that anyone who has ever flown with an inconsolable infant or child would understand why a parent would use medication, but the problem may be less about fussy kids, and more about our collective lack of patience as a society. 

Many flyers and docs agree,  saying the only reason to even consider giving a child a sedative, is if the experience is too stressful for the child, not because of the discomfort of other people on the plane.
Perhaps parents traveling with children should simply forget about what passengers think?

Would you sedate your child on a flight?

About Kaleel


  1. Some adults should be sedated lol…
    Children in some cases should be sedated if they are “Uncontrolable”. Now the fact that they may be uncontrolable could be due to poor parenting. In those cases, the parents need to learn how to handle their child/children in order to prevent them from acting out on airplanes. Now if its a condition on the part of the child that is uncontrolable due to that said condition, it may be acceptable to “drug” the child. Hopefully that would be last option. Just like bringing a dog on the air plane, you don’t really want to drug the dog, but sometimes it may be best for everybody.

    In respect to adults, I sat beside a man who could not stop shaking his one leg (nervous habit i think). He needed to be sedated somewhat to relax as he disturbed me MY ENTIRE flight. Flying is a luxory that should be enjoyed by all the customers. When other people, including kids disrupt that travel, I feel thats not fair. Now maybe drugging people is not the solution, but there needs to be some solutions for these issues!

  2. oh, and If all else fails, I’ll just sedate myself!

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