How to Give a Baby Vitamin D Drops

High angle view of a mother teaching her son to swim
A few minutes of sun each day provides your baby with vitamin D. (Image: Purestock/Purestock/Getty Images)

Most full-term infants obtain enough vitamin D from breast or bottle-feeding or through exposure to the sun. Your infant might need a supplement if you are breastfeeding and your own levels of vitamin D are too low, as the amount of vitamin D in your breast milk is directly related to how much of the vitamin you have in your body. She may also require vitamin D drops if she eats a formula without vitamin D or consumes less than 32 oz. of formula daily and spends less than 30 minutes of time in the sun each week wearing only a diaper.

Step 1

Read the instructions on the vitamin D drops packaging. If you have any questions, consult your pharmacist or pediatrician before administering the drops to your baby.

Step 2

Open the supplement and fill the enclosed dropper to the 1 mL line to administer 400 IU of vitamin D, which is the standard dosage.

Step 3

Hold your infant so that she is slightly reclined to prevent the drops from running out of her mouth. She does not need to be fully reclined.

Step 4

Place the end of the dropper to the side of your baby's mouth so that it points at her cheek. Squeeze the end of the dropper until all the liquid is expelled. Aiming the liquid at the side of her mouth will help prevent gagging.

Step 5

Administer half the dose of vitamin D drops and give your baby time to swallow and recover if she has trouble taking the full dose at once. Once her mouth is clear, give her the rest of the dose.

Step 6

Drop the vitamin dose into formula, expressed breast milk, applesauce, cereal or another food if your baby refuses to swallow the drops.

Step 7

Give your baby a missed dose as soon as possible after you remember it. If more than 12 hours have passed since the scheduled dose time, skip the missed dose. Do not administer two doses on the same day.

Step 8

Store vitamin D drops in a closed container and away from light, heat and moisture. Make certain the vitamin is stored out of the reach of children and pets.

Tip

The American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends that breastfeeding mothers supplement their babies with 400 IU of vitamin D each day, beginning in the first few days of life.

Vitamin D is necessary for growth and for strong bones and teeth.

Give your baby vitamin D drops before or after feedings.

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