11 must-have products for expat parents in Sweden

Sunburns and foot warts and lice, oh my! Here are 11 products every expat parent should keep in their medicine cabinet.

11 must-have products for expat parents in Sweden
Photo: Lena Granefelt/

Whether you moved to Sweden with children or your kids were born here, sometimes you need a little help! And what to do when you’re missing things like Sudocrem or Coppertone and have no idea what the Swedish equivalent is?

The Local teamed up with Sweden’s largest pharmacy chain to figure out what every expat parent should have in their medicine cabinet.

1. Vitamin D drops

Photo: Helena Wahlman/

First off, remember, this is Sweden we're talking about, not Spain. And even the kiddos need some Vitamin D – fortified milk just isn't going to cut it in the darker months. In fact, Vitamin D is so important that kids in Sweden are given Vitamin D drops from the time they're born until age 2. But that doesn't mean you should stop then. In fact, Sweden’s National Food Agency (Livsmedelverket) recommends everyone have a daily intake of at least 10mcg from Vitamin D.

Vitamin D drops are available at Apotek Hjärtat – perfect for youngsters who aren’t ready to swallow big tablets.

2. Zinc cream

Brits swear by Sudocrem; some Americans swear by Desitin. But whatever it’s called where you’re from, it can work wonders, particularly on diaper rash.

That's where Aco Minicare Baby Zinc Cream comes in – specially formulated to care of children's sensitive skin.

There are a few other versions available as well – just keep your eye out for zinksalva (zinc salve) or zinkpasta (paste, that is, not pasta).

PS: Apotek Hjärtat has a whole checklist of what you should have at home if you’re bringing home a newborn – check it out here.

3. Digital thermometer

Photo: Johan Willner/

Another important item for parents to have at home is a digital thermometer.  Apotek Hjärtat carries several, but the Braun Thermoscan 7 has special settings to correctly measure and interpret temperatures of both children and adults.

 4. Alvedon*

When your child has a fever you want to be prepared with the right type and concentration of paracetamol. Alvedon comes in drops (oral lösning) which can be used from 3 months old, as well as suppositories and dissolvable tablets for older children. See the children’s fever section here to shop all products.

5. Lice treatment

Ah, yes, the days when kids go to school and come home with head lice. It’s a treasured moment of parenting, wouldn’t you say?

Actually, it’s pretty louse-y. But hopefully it's a moment you can skip. Be prepared with Linicin Prevent Spray to stop the bugs before they settle down. If it's too late for that, never fear- there are plenty of shampoos and other treatments available, as well as louse combs.

6. Foot wart remover

Photo: Martin Svalander/

Kids come home with all sorts of great gifts from school, don’t they? Plantar warts are another one. Warts are called vårtor in Swedish, and you can get plasters with salicylic acid to help the mild ones. There are also wart treatment pens and freezers available which last up to 30 applications, so you’re ready to thwart (get it?) those buggers no matter how often they pop up.

7. Gentle shampoos and lotions

Small children typically need products that are gentler than what many adults use – without things like strong perfumes. Apotek Hjärtat has a wide selection of shampoo, lotion, body oil, soap, conditioner, and bubble bath that is soft on sensitive skin. Check out the Head and Hair section for kids here.

8. Baby wipes and beyond

Let's not forget the basics! Baby wipes, baby powder, diapers for newborns and premature babies, Q-tips specifically for infants, and baby nail scissors are all available in store or online – just check the baby care section.

9. Allergies

Winters in Sweden may be long and dark, but when spring does roll around, it goes all in. Which means plenty of pollen.

If your child has allergies, make sure to have something on hand that’s specially formulated for kids and can help them enjoy the great Swedish outdoors hassle-free.

10. Sunscreen

Photo: Johan Willner/

Speaking of spring, when the sun shows up again in Sweden, it’s here to stay for a long while! Children's skin is particularly sensitive to the sun, and Swedish summer means long days and plenty of rays. Whether you prefer spray, lotion, or a rub-on stick, make sure you have high SPF sunscreen available.

11. Plasters

Finally, whether your child prefers bandages covered in Minions, Cars, or pictures of Anna and Elsa from Frozen, Apotek Hjärtat has you covered. Because naturally every boo-boo feels better when you’ve got a pretty plaster on it.

*Remember that, as with any medicine, it's important that you always read the patient information leaflet before using prescription-free medicine.

This article was produced by The Local Client Studio and sponsored by Apotek Hjärtat.


New Year’s Eve injury rate bounces back to normal in Denmark

The number of people treated for fireworks-related injuries on New Year's Eve in Denmark has bounced back to normal levels, with 16 people treated for eye injuries after the celebrations.

New Year's Eve injury rate bounces back to normal in Denmark
Fireworks led to 16 eye injuries on New Year's Eve. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

This is up from the unusually low 12 people who were treated for eye injuries during and after the celebrations last year. Two of this year’s injuries are sufficiently severe that the injured are expected to lose their sight completely or partially.

“After a very quiet evening last year, it is back to a normal, average level,” Ulrik Correll Christensen, head doctor at the ophthalmology department at Rigshospitalet, told the country’s Ritzau newswire. “It is a completely extraordinary situation at the eye departments on New Year’s Eve. It is not at all something we see on a daily basis.” 

Christensen has tallied up reports from all of Denmark’s eye units, including the major ones in Copenhagen, Aalborg, Aarhus, Odense and Næstved. 

He said that 15 out of the 16 cases had not worn safety goggles, two thirds were between ten and thirty years old. 

“The most important thing is to follow the advice when firing fireworks. Wear safety goggles and keep a good distance,” he said. 

The number of ambulance call outs on New Year’s Eve is also back to normal, with 1,188 emergency vehicles sent out, compared to 875 last year. 

In the Capital Region of Copenhagen, there were 44 call-outs were related to fireworks, of which 16 were for hand injuries and 14 for eye injuries.