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The child-rearing 'Bible' we'd relied upon for practical guidance on each aspect of dealing with a newborn. Breast milk, according to the (American) paediatrician Dr Spock does not include sufficient Vitamin D so it needs to be supplemented in their own diet in the form of vitamin drops, and to supply all of the needs of a young breast fed baby.
This always looked a bit strange to me - given that breastmilk being what it is, you'd expect it to include all of the essential 'ingredients' to nourish a baby successfully, wouldn't you?
I asked around and got conflicting guidance. A number of the midwives / nurses I spoke to recommended a product I'd never heard of - these "Abidec Drops" as a vitamin supplement for babies (I needed to get them to write it down to figure out the precise name of the product in the end) while others frankly, laughed me out of the area health centre simply for inquiring. Still, Spock hadn't demonstrated us wrong before, and when my daughter was six months old, we started her on the drops. She was taking them for about 18 months - I believe till she was about a couple of years old, when she finally rebelled about (presumably) the drops' bizarre flavor. She's in pretty good physical condition at age five - though that might well have happened anyway.
You make use of this to draw up measured levels of Abidec liquid in the bottle, which you afterward squirt into the mouth of your young one. A six month old baby for instance, gets just a miniature 0.3ml of the solution. Older children - and it is recommended for youngsters up to age 12 - get 0.6ml. The dose contains (in varying sums which I assume correspond to varying percentages of a kid 's Recommended Daily Quantity):
Also in the mixture are sodium hydroxide, polysorbate 60, sugar, nitrogen, water and PEANUT OIL. The batches also provide use-by dates in the bottle.
Although the info accompanying the product (and this is repeated in the bottle, box and information sheet inside) does say - in true smallish print - that it contains peanut oil, I really don't believe - given the sensed risk of peanut allergies in Britain these days - that nearly enough of a big deal is made of this stage on the packaging. They must write this in larger letters in the box to warn individuals whose children have peanut allergy, in minimum. And while I am deeply sceptical regarding the accepted explanation for the rising prevalence of peanut allergy in the West, it's nonetheless a serious issue for many people - and so I found it peculiar that the vitamin supplement / well-being product should use this type of controversial material myself.
Apart from its peanut oil component that is bad, Abidec smells strange and I think the one time I tasted it, was likewise unusual to eat. My son's over six months of age, and my daughter was excellent and accepted it rather nicely for the first couple of months, I've started him on a daily dose also. The product would be therefore tentatively recommended by me - so long as it's being to children who don't have a family history of allergies in general / susceptibility to peanut allergy.
And the thing about Vitamin D in breast milk? my son was created in late October) and particularly for darker-skinned folks living in such regions at this time of year (since obviously, individuals who have more pigment in their skin need a larger level of exposure to sunshine to permit them to generate an equal amount of Vitamin D), breast-milk can in fact become Vitamin D-deficient.
My son has recently become a rather fussy eater. Whilst I can cope with this and there are foods he will eat happily, I do worry about the fact that his diet isn't perfectly balanced and he may be lacking certain vitamins. I recently read that it was recommended that all toddlers took vitamin supplements and this, coupled with his picky eating, persuaded me to look for a supplement for him. Being picky, he is not good with medicines either so I knew a vitamin in the form of a pill or tablet was a no go for us. Whilst browsing the relevant aisle in Tesco, I came across these Abidec Multivitamin drops and decided to give them a go.
The drops are £3.70 for 25ml but are part of the three for two vitamin promotion so can be picked up slightly cheaper. They are specifically designed for babies and children and contain '7 essential vitamins to aid healthy growth' and are said to have a 'natural flavour and aroma'.
The drops come in a small glass bottle in a bright orange box with a picture of a smiling baby on the front. In the box, you also get a small syringe for measuring the correct amount for one dose and for giving it to your child - you are directed to squirt this at the back of the tongue. The liquid is syrupy in texture and a clear brown colour. It is easy to draw this up in the syringe which is marked for two dose levels - 0.3ml for younger babies and 0.6ml for toddlers. The vitamins contained in the drops include Vitamin A, Vitamin D2, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C. Whilst the drops do not contain quite the vast array of vitamins that other supplements might, I was happy that they would suitably boost my son's diet and help him get through the winter months as healthily as possible.
As I mentioned previously, my son is not good with medicines so I cannot give these to him in the recommended way and instead, hide them in his puddings. This has, so far, been a success and he hasn't tasted them in there at all. The bottle contains several doses so I think it is pretty decent value for money - you need to use them within four weeks of opening the bottle though.
It is hard to say exactly what effect these are having for my son but they certainly provide me with peace of mind and reassurance that he is getting the recommended amounts of some vital vitamins. The fact that they are drops also works well for us and I will definitely be giving these to him for the foreseeable future until I am satisfied that his diet has improved and provides him with the necessary nutrients.
My daughter is a PICKY PICKY eater and gets a lot of colds and flus. She has had a particularly bad time of it this winter and I thought with the weather warming up it might get better. Unfortunately she has a terrible cough at the moment and a friend recommended giving a vitamin supplement. I actually discovered on the NHS website that they now recommend all under 5s have a supplement.
So, I started off with Vitabiotics Wellkid vitamin syrup as it was a fully comprehensive supplement. I thought it was great and have written a review about it but after a few days I actually found that my daughter hated the taste and the dose of 5ml was quite a lot to try and hide in her food, so I looked for alternatives.
I found Abidec and decided to give it a go as the dose is only 0.6ml so much less to hide in smoothies and yoghurts! It contains 7 essential vitamins but no minerals or omega 3s, so it's not as fully comprehensve as the Wellkid one but even my picky eater does eat does things, and tuna is on her list so I don't need to worry about her Omeags 3s so much!
This does taste absolutely disgusting - it says on the packet natural taste and aroma, so there are no additives to attempt to make it taste nice. They needn't bother anyway, the Wellkid one tastes gross too! Since the dose is less than 1ml I can hide it in her food such as yoghurt, custard, smoothies, etc and she doesn't notice it.
It costs around £4 per bottle which will last one child a month, so quite expensive but you can often buy on offer in Boots, it is worth shopping around
I have been using vitamins for a few days and I have noticed her with more energy and her cough is getting better, so I would recommend a little supplement if your child is not a great eater.
If you have read my previous review you will know that I wanted to find some vitamins to help boost my daughters immune systems for over the winter and I tried the Abidec vitamin syrup but my youngest daughter didn't like it at all so I decided to give these a try instead, it states on the box that it has a natural flavour and aroma.
The vitamins are available from chemists and supermarkets and cost just short of £4 for a bottle of 25mls but as the dosage starts at 0.3mls you actually have quite a long course.
The vitamins come in a bright orange cardboard box with a picture of an infant on the front, it states that there are 7 essential vitamins to help aid healthy growth included. It is stated that babies and children can use these vitamins, children under 1 year need to take 0.3mls per day and children from 1-12 years old need to take 0.6mls a day.
The liquid contains Vitamin A, Vitamin D2, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C so it doesn't actually have as wide a range of vitamins in it as some of the other products available and even some of the other products available from Abidec.
Inside the box you find that there is a syringe included which is great as getting such a small dose in a normal syringe or even on a spoon would be almost impossible. To use the vitamins you have to draw up the liquid in the syringe and then direct the drops to the back of the tongue to administer. The liquid smells very sweet and it does taste of orange however it does have a medical taste to it too and yet again Emily doesn't like the taste.
I wanted to give my girls some vitamins to boost their immune system as one likes salad and a bit of fruit and the other likes veg and a bit of fruit so between them I know that they will be lacking in some vitamins. I have found it very difficult to find a vitamin for a 2 year old which doesn't have a strong flavour and this one just is not it. I cannot say if these vitamins had any effect on my daughter or not, I ended up having to hide the vitamins in her drinks but did noticed she would drink less on drinks that had this in them so I ended up putting it in the bin about half way down the bottle.
If your child will accept strong and not very palatable flavours then this will probably be ok for you but as mine won't it is not a suitable product for us.
It's a good job Abidec Multivitamin Drops appear to do the job because finding multivitamins suitable for babies is extraordinarily difficult.
I was initially told by my health visitor that I should consider buying multivitamin drops for my daughter when she was six months old. The rationale was my daughter was still being breast fed and therefore not necessarily getting enough iron. I found this statement a little irritating to be honest. I couldn't understand how I could in any way be penalised for continuing to breast feed in conjunction with introducing solid food rather than reaching for the formula. What happened in years gone by before vitamin drops and formula even existed and all babies were breast fed?
Anyway, being a first time mum I was of the opinion there was no point taking chances and anything I could do to benefit my daughter's health I would do.
The health visitor had said I could purchase the vitamin drops I needed right there at the children's centre but I didn't take her up on her offer because I was sure I could buy them at the local chemist later.
Dutifully I went to the chemist that afternoon and they didn't have any multivitamins suitable for babies in stock. The pharmacist did say he could order a bottle of Abidec in for me. Again I declined thinking Tesco would surely have these vitamins and this time I was armed with a name.
Tesco didn't have any Abidec or any other baby vitamins of any kind. Finally, I tracked down a bottle while doing the weekly Tesco shop online.
The product comes in a bright orange box with the picture of a wide-mouthed baby on the front. Most importantly the baby looks healthy and happy.
Abidec clearly states on the box it contains seven essential vitamins to aid growth and is geared at babies and children. It also boasts a natural flavour and aroma. I can't vouch for the taste but the smell is quite herbal. There is certainly nothing added to make it taste sweeter or more pleasant but gauging the reaction on my daughter's face she has got used to the taste. At first she would wrinkle up her nose at the drops but now she takes them quite easily.
Inside the box is a little bottle with a screw top lid and a syringe. This syringe is invaluable as not only does it make it much easier to administer the vitamins to your baby but the syringe is marked in two places - at 0.3ml and 0.6ml - in accordance with the amount to be given to a baby under one year and a child from one to 12 years.
To give the drops to your baby you place the syringe in the bottle and pull the plunger up until it reaches the desired amount. You then place the syringe in your baby's mouth - the box suggests at the back of the tongue but in reality you get the syringe in as far as your baby will allow - and push the plunger back into the syringe. This releases the drops into your baby's mouth.
A few drops usually escape and dribble down your baby's chin. It is best to wipe this up quickly as the vitamin drops - which are orange in colour - do stain clothes.
The bottle contains 25ml of liquid and the instructions recommend throwing the bottle away four weeks after opening. When administering just 0.3ml a day you may find you have a little bit left over after that time but not much is wasted.
Washing the syringe is easy. You separate the two parts and rinse them under the tap. It is best to leave the syringe parts to dry naturally before putting them back together and back into the box as it is hard to dry right inside the outer case of the syringe.
The box does warn this product contains peanut oil. This does not concern me but if you are worried about nut allergies it is probably best to steer clear of this product or alternatively keep an eye on your child after initially giving them a dose of these vitamins for any adverse reaction.
It is hard to gauge how effective these vitamin drops are but all I can say is my daughter is almost a year old and she has not been ill yet. How much this is down to Abidec Multivitamins it is hard to say but they are obviously not doing her any harm.
I bought this without much research as it was included on a buy 2 get one free offer. I was buying multi vits for myself and my older child, so thought why not get some for the baby too? However, had it cost me anything, it would have been a complete waste of money.
The product is difficult to dispense, and I ended up spilling loads on the table. When I finally figured it out, I put the dropper in my sons mouth, and as I squeezed, he pulled his mouth away. More mess. On further investigation, it became clear that he'd turned away because the product tastes absolutely disgusting. There is no way I could ever get him to take these drops unless I forced it, which I am not preared to do. Afetr all, I bought them to improve his health, not to cause unnecessary stress and upset.
Definitely not recommended.
It was recommended by my Health Visitor that I considered giving a vitamin supplement to my son once I started weaning him onto solids. The only Children's Vitamins I had had experience of using was Abidec and so this was the reason I opted for this brand.
********Why I Chose Abidec**********
As a child's body is constantly undergoing a state of growth and repair it needs a higher concentration of vitamins and minerals per kilogram of body mass. In particular, it is believed that infants and young children may not get enough of particular but necessary vitamins from their diet and therefore their diet should be supplemented. Infact, the Food Standards Agency (which is the government department that is responsible for protecting public health in relation to food and diet) recommends that all children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years should take a childrens vitamin preparation that contain vitamins A, C and D.
Abidec Vitamin drops contain 7 essential vitamins, including the recommended vitamins A, C and D. The information on the leaflet within the bottle says that Abidec contains Vitamin A, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, and Vitamin D2 - and that it gives these vitamins in the concentration required.
I liked the idea of being able to give all of the necessary vitamins together in one go, rather than having to give multiple preparations. In addition to this, I liked the fact that the preparation came in a liquid form that was concentrated and so only a very small amount of the solution needed to be given at one time......which is always a bonus when you're giving something to a child that they might not necessarily want! In addition to this, as I said earlier, it was a brand that I was aware of and one the my Health Visitor confirmed was a respected manufacturer.
I have seen Abidec in most chemists instore and online and so it is really easy to get hold of. The drops come in small glass bottles which are enclosed within a box, and each bottle contains 25 mls of the solution. It can be bought without prescription - although a GP will prescribe it for certain groups (which means you'll get it free!), i.e. infants born prematurely.
The price has varied depending on where I have bought the Abidec. My best price was from ChemistDirect which was £2.69 (which included delivery), but I have also bought it from Boots for £3.04 and also from the Co-Op for £3.69. I generally buy it from Boots just because this is where I get most of my chemist-based shopping.
When the bottle is first bought it has a safety seal on it which obviously lets you know if the bottle has been tampered with. The screw top is not child proof and so it should be kept out of the reach of children and it is a very small top and so if you have difficulty gripping (as my mother does!) then this bottle may be difficult to open.
Once opened, the bottle lasts for 28 days and after this the contents should be discarded - which always seems a shame to me as I always have plenty left in the bottle, but you can give this to children up to 12 years old and so if you have two children within this age range then you can share the bottle between them.
**********Administering the Abidec****************
With the bottle, you also get a plastic oral syringe which has 0.3ml and 0.6ml marked on it. This is the two standard doses recommended by the manufacturers. This syringe can be cleaned between uses with soapy water and sterilized if necessary. I did note that over the course of the month, the more and more I wash the syringe, the markings do start to become more and more faded - but it is still possible to see the lines even at the end of the month. I tend to keep the syringe with the bottle in the box so that I don't loose it.
You only have to give the Abidec once per day - at whatever time it's convenient for you to give it. I tend to give it in the morning with breakfast as having the same routine helps me to not forget! Drawing up the solution with the syringe is easy. If your child is under 1 years old then they recommend 0.3 ml, but if your child is over 1 year old then they recommend 0.6 mls. I like the fact that we're talking about such small quantities as it makes it easier to get in to my son!
Now, there is no getting away from the fact that, in my opinion, Abidec smells disgusting. It really does! To me is smells very yeasty and I think if you give your child the opportunity of smelling this first, you are never going to get this near them! The colour is okay for kids because it is brightly coloured (dark yellow / orange), but beware that if you drop this on any material it WILL stain it and will not always wash out even at high temperatures. However, to be honest, despite the disgusting smell, my son really doesn't seem to mind the taste and so he doesn't spit it out and so it rarely gets on his clothes anyway. If by any chance it does, I have found that white wine does help to make it fade (as it does red wine!).
Administering this product is supposed to be done towards the back of the tongue - which with the syringe is easy to do. You can also put it into a drink or a bottle of milk - as long as you can be sure they will drink the entire thing. I have done this on occasion with my son when he is being particularly stubborn (which has become more of an issue as he's got older!), but generally he does take it from the syringe with no problem.
***********Concerns re: Peanut Oil**************
Abidec does contain Arachis oil (also known as peanut oil) and obviously this has caused some concerns because there is some evidence that introducing peanut oil to children when they are very young could increase their risk of developing a peanut allergy (which can be very serious as peanut allergies are usually of the anaphylactic type). However, the manufacturers of Abidec say that they have removed the protein from the Arachis oil and it is the protein that holds the potential allergen. Having said that, it does say that you shouldn't give it if there is a known peanut allergy. I've been happy to give it because my family does not have any known allergies and so I think my son would be pretty low risk for developing a severe allergy - and the protein removal decreases the risks of this happening further.
The only evidence I have that this vitamin preparation works is that I have a healthy and happy two year old boy. And that's the best evidence I could have!
It smells and tastes awful. Used it just 3 times and it made my son sick every time. Waste of money.
Now there was a certain amount of information / disinformation regarding the subject of mostly / exclusively breast-fed babies and their need for (drum-roll, please) Vitamin D when I had my first sprog five years ago.
The child-rearing 'Bible' we'd relied upon for sensible advice on every aspect of dealing with a newborn so far - Dr Benjamin Spock's big book of raising children - was very clear on this point. Breast-milk, according to the (American) paediatrician Dr Spock does not contain sufficient Vitamin D to supply all of a young breast-fed baby's needs, and so it has to be supplemented in their diet in the form of vitamin drops.
This always seemed a bit odd to me - given that breast-milk being what it is, you'd expect it to contain all the necessary 'ingredients' to nourish a baby successfully, wouldn't you?
I asked around and got conflicting advice. Some of the midwives / nurses I spoke to recommended a product I'd never heard of - these "Abidec Drops" as a vitamin supplement for babies (I had to get them to write it down to find out the exact name of the product in the end) while others frankly, laughed me out of the local health centre just for asking. Still, Spock hadn't shown us wrong before, and so when my daughter was six months old, we started her on the drops. She was taking them for about 18 months - I think till she was about two years old, when she finally rebelled about (presumably) the weird taste of the drops. She's in pretty good physical shape at age five now - though that might well have happened anyway.
Abidec Drops come in a little brown bottle with orange and white labelling and a white plastic Abidec-dispensing lid that incorporates a nozzle / dropper mechanism. You use this to draw up measured amounts of Abidec liquid from the bottle, which you then squirt into your young one's mouth. A six month old baby for example, gets just a tiny 0.3ml of the solution. Older children - and it's recommended for kids up to the age of 12 - get 0.6ml. The dose contains (in varying amounts which I suppose correspond to varying proportions of a child's Recommended Daily Amount):
Also in the mix are sodium hydroxide, sugar, polysorbate 60, nitrogen, water and PEANUT OIL. 25ml of this stuff costs you just under £4 (it's very widely available at chemists and supermarkets, for example I think it's about £3.70 at Tesco); it stores at room temperature, but once opened the bottle has to be used up I think within about six weeks. The batches also have use-by dates on the bottle.
Though the info accompanying the product (and this is repeated on the bottle, box and info sheet inside) does say - in admittedly smallish print - that it contains peanut oil, I don't think - given the perceived danger of peanut allergies in Britain these days - that nearly enough of a big deal is made of this point on the packaging. They need to write this in bigger letters on the box to warn people whose kids have peanut allergy, at the very least. And while I am deeply sceptical about the accepted explanation for the rising incidence of peanut allergy in the West, it is nonetheless a real problem for some people - and so I found it odd that a vitamin supplement / health product should use such a contentious material myself.
Aside from its evil peanut oil constituent, Abidec smells chemically weird and I think the one time I tasted it, was similarly peculiar to eat. My daughter accepted it quite well for the first few months and was fine, and now my son's over six months of age, I've started him on a daily dose too. Neither have developed (touch wood) peanut allergy, or so far as I'm aware rickets yet, which means so far, so good. I would thus tentatively recommend the product - so long as it's being to kids who don't have a family history of allergies in general / susceptibility to peanut allergy.
And the thing about Vitamin D in breast milk? Well of COURSE breast-milk contains Vitamin D, but only - as I understand it - if the breast-feeding mother gets out and about in the sunshine on a regular basis to 'top up' her own reserves of the chemical. So, in northern latitudes in winter (eg. my son was born in late October) and especially for darker-skinned people living in such areas at this time of year (since apparently, people who have more pigment in their skin require a greater level of exposure to sunlight to let them generate an equivalent amount of Vitamin D), breast-milk can in fact become Vitamin D-deficient.
As a sad footnote to the subject: one of the little girls at the playgroup we attended back in 2005 had developed bow-legs due to effectively - rickets - which is Vitamin D deficiency by any other name. She'd been exclusively breast-fed by her mother - whose parents came from Kashmir; this lady had of course noticed that something was going wrong from quite early on, and though she asked her health centre nurses repeatedly about the problem, it wasn't acknowledged / picked up until the child's development had already been affected. Happily, apparently it is something that will 'sort itself out' as the kid grows, but this sort of thing should certainly not be happening - and especially not in a developed country where we assure ourselves we have decent standards of health-care - in the first place.
I felt that I had to write about this product as I was shocked at what I had found, My daughter has a lot of of healthe problems and needs extra vitamins in her diet. I have tried Avidec multi for a couple of days and found that she was very gripey and eventually she was sick. I could not figure out why. It was when i was chatting to a freind on the net and she asked me what vitamins I was giving my daughter that I actually fead the ingredients. What did I find the vitamins containede? PEANUT OIL!!!!!! I f you did not already know children under 3 can develop peanut allergies due to exposure to products containing them. Also what if like myself someone didnot notice the peanut oil and gave the vitiamins to child who had know allergies......... Pleas check all ingredients of any product you give a young child and Pfizer and other producers of child health products please do not use peanuts in any form in these you could be saving yourself embarassment.
Abidec contains 7 essential vitamins and is free from artificial colours, flavours & preservatives / Given daily, Abidec provides a balance of vitamins to maintain your child?s healthy growth.