Board of Pharmacy
1625 N. Market Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95834
It’s important to measure liquid medicine accurately in order to get the right dose.
Liquid medicine sometimes comes with a measuring device like a cup, spoon, or
dropper. Be sure to use the right device in order to get the right dose.
Check the markings carefully on the measuring device. Most liquid medicine is
measured by teaspoon (tsp) or milliliter (mL) or cc.
1 mL = 1 cc
2.5 mL = 2.5 cc = 1/2 teaspoon (tsp)
5 mL = 5 cc = 1 tsp
15 mL = 15 cc = 3 tsp = 1 tablespoon (tbl or Tbsp)
Using kitchen silverware instead of a measuring device that comes with a
medicine can result in the wrong dosing -- too much or too little of the medicine.
For example, a large kitchen spoon can hold twice as much liquid as a small
kitchen spoon. Use the measuring device provided with the medicine instead of
If your liquid medicine doesn’t come with a measuring device, ask for one at the
pharmacy. Some of the most common measuring devices include:
dosing cup measuring spoons dosing spoon dosing syringe
Be sure to measure liquid medicine at eye level, and never guess at the dose.
Use the dose shown on the prescription label. This is especially important when
giving liquid medicine to children.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about measuring liquid