What's new

twice a day vs twice every day

hirashin

Sempai
Donor
Joined
Apr 8, 2004
Messages
2,344
Ratings
23
Dear native English speakers,
Which would be used? I think (a) would be fine.
(a) Take this medicine twice a day.
(b) Take this medicine twice every day.
(c) Take this medicine two times a day.
(d) Take this medicine two times every day.
(e) Have this medicine twice a day.

Hirashin
 
Joined
Aug 3, 2015
Messages
194
Ratings
20
Each option suggests the same routine, really. (a) would be more commonly used when a doctor prescribes something. Although each option suggests a course of action, (a) is used when it is common knowledge that it is to be repeated over a period of time. Of course (b) is more descriptive, but it isn't usually needed. So I think you are correct in choosing (a). As a side note; (c) could be used in the same way as (a) - although isn't as natural sounding.
 
Joined
Aug 3, 2015
Messages
194
Ratings
20
Thanks for the help, Lacota.
Would (e) be used as well?
Yes, it could be used but it sounds a bit authoritative and demanding. Unless the doctor is in a bad mood, you probably wouldn't hear them say it quite like that. But grammatically there is nothing wrong with (e) - it is much the same as (a), really.
 
Joined
Dec 23, 2010
Messages
974
Ratings
148
You can "have" a meal (or food) twice a day, but not medicine.

I'd understand, but it's awkward. I'd correct it if I got it on a paper from one of my students.
 
Top