What are oral syringes?
Designed to deliver medication in liquid form, oral syringes provide a safe way to measure and administer medicine via the mouth. Suitable for use in patients of all ages, oral syringes may be appropriate in instances in which patients are unable to take medication in tablet form. Similarly, medication may be administered via an oral syringe if delivery via injection is not necessary or not viable.
Usually manufactured from plastic, oral syringes have a nozzle on one end and a plunger which sits within the main body of the syringe. When pulled up, this plunger enables liquid to be drawn up into the syringe. When pushed down, the plunger successfully expels the liquid via the nozzle and allows medication to be administered directly into the mouth of the patient.
What are the types of syringes?
Although syringes may look similar to one another, there are various types of these measuring devices on the market. Oral syringes should be used solely to administer medication via the mouth, whereas injectable syringes are typically used to administer medicine via a parenteral route. In some cases, syringes may also be used to remove liquids, such as blood, from the body.
Syringes are available in various sizes, and physicians will select which size syringe is appropriate depending on how the medication is to be administered, what the relevant dose is and how thick the liquid is.
Injectable syringes are available in various forms, each with different tips. These enable needles and other attachments to be fitted to the device so that they can be used for subcutaneous, intramuscular and intravenous injections, as well as other types of parenteral deliveries.
Can you reuse oral syringes?
Generally, plastic syringes are designed to be single-use only, although patients may be advised to reuse oral syringes in some instances. If an oral syringe is prescribed with medication or sold with over-the-counter medication, patients may be advised to wash the oral syringe after use and re-use it. Patients should always check with a medical professional before reusing a syringe and should only allow an oral syringe to be used by one person, rather than shared by family members, for example.
In healthcare settings, however, it is not advisable to reuse oral syringes due to the risk of cross-contamination. If patients are being treated in a hospital or clinic, for example, oral syringes should be used only once and disposed of immediately.
What is the difference between oral syringes and injectable syringes?
Oral syringes are used to administer medication via the mouth, whereas injectable syringes are used alongside other equipment to administer medicine via other parts of the body. Both types of syringe should have clear markings on the barrel so that you can measure the amount of liquid in the syringe.
However, there are clear differences between these two types of syringes. Oral syringes are typically amber or orange in colour, for example, although oral syringes which are capable of administering more than 10mls of liquid may be clear. In addition to this, injectable syringes typically have a threaded tip. This is so a needle can be attached to it in order to deliver the medication. In contrast, oral syringes don’t have a threaded tip because no other equipment needs to be attached to them when medication is administered. However, there are various adapters which can be used with oral syringes to increase the ease and accuracy when drawing liquid medicine into the syringe and in laboratory settings.
Are syringes different for children and adults?
Oral syringes differ depending on the volume of liquid which needs to be administered. An oral syringe with a maximum capacity of 10mls may be larger than a syringe with a capacity of 1ml, for example. As children are often prescribed lower dosages of medication than adults, smaller syringes may be used to administer their medicine. However, this is due to the amount of liquid being delivered, rather than being specifically due to the age of the patient.
What materials are used for oral syringes?
Oral syringes are predominantly made from plastic, with both the barrel, tip and plunger being constructed from this material. The stopper, which sits inside the barrel on the end of the plunger, is usually made from rubber and is typically black in colour. This contrast in colours helps to accurately measure medication when it is drawn up into the syringe, and the rubber stopper creates a complete seal within the barrel and prevents medication from leaking.