Codeine should only be used to relieve acute moderate pain in children older than 12 years and only if it cannot be relieved by other painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen alone.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has issued a letter dated 9 July 2013 informing healthcare professionals about important new information for the use of codeine for analgesia in children and adolescents younger than 18 years.