Child Coughs and Colds Medicines and Home RemediesThroughout the seasonal changes, coughs and colds are all too common. As a parent, you want to do everything you can to help your child feel better. But what kind of cough or cold medicine is best? And are there any home remedies that might work? Let’s take a look at some of the child care options readily available to parents.
Coughing and colds are caused by viruses, so forget about antibioticsWhen you’re dealing with a child’s cold it’s important to remember that coughing and colds are caused by viruses, not bacteria, so antibiotics will not be able to help. In fact, taking antibiotics when they’re unnecessary could solely serve to weaken an immune system instead of strengthening it. It’s best to rely on rest and home remedies like mushrooms, ginger tea, honey, and vapor rub to help your child get back on their feet as quickly as possible! And any supplemental medicines can help control the symptoms of a cough or cold like sore throat and fever.
Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and help thin mucusStaying well-hydrated is essential to your child’s health even when they are not sick, so if they’re dealing with thick mucus from a cold it’s even more vital to stay on top of fluid intake. Drinking plenty of fluids helps keep things moving in a child’s respiratory system and helps thin the mucus so it can be more easily cleared away. Aim for at least 8 glasses of water or other healthy liquids each day, such as juice, herbal tea or broth. If your child is having difficulty getting enough fluids, try adding extra herbs, zests and fruit infusions to their beverages for an extra boost of flavor and nutrition which may make water more enticing to drink. Adding a pinch of sea salt or fresh citrus slices can also offer some electrolytes for optimal hydration. Staying hydrated is just a good habit to instill in your child that will be beneficial throughout their life.
Gargling warm salt water is a natural remedy to soothe a sore throatTaking care of a sore throat can be complicated, but gargling with warm salt water is one of the oldest and most time-tested remedies around. Not only is it easy to do, but it’s also a simple and inexpensive way to provide some relief and comfort. The warm temperature of the water helps relieve tenderness in the throat, while the salt helps reduce swelling and ease minor discomfort. Preparing the remedy is easy, just mix about half a teaspoon of salt with eight ounces of warm water until fully dissolved, then your child can swish it around for 15-20 seconds and spit out. Of course, this home remedy isn’t for infants and younger children that can’t perform the technique, but older kids and adolescents can utilize this for relief. Before using this remedy, consider talking with your healthcare provider if you’re unsure whether or not it’s the best course of action for you.
Have your child rest as much as possible so they can heal properlySickness brings on aches and exhaustion as your body recovers and combats the cold. In these moments, it’s important to have time set aside for your child to rest. Resting as much as possible will allow their body time to heal so that they can get back to school and playing outside again. Fighting an illness can be stressful on the body and mind, and young children might be frustrated at a relatively new experience to them, so make sure they can recalibrate with some extra rest whenever they start to feel run down.
Consider using over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain reliefTaking over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can be a viable solution when it comes to alleviating mild to moderate pain from a cold fever. It’s very important to make sure you fully understand the directions and dosages for children, however, as taking too much medication can result in harmful side effects. Talk with your pediatrician if you have any questions or concerns about using these types of medications for your child. Taking time to carefully read the warning labels is also crucial before beginning treatment. Your child’s happiness and well-being are a top priority, so have all the information before starting any medical treatment plan.
Cough medicine as a tool for your child’s coldsCough medicines can come in handy when trying to soothe an irritating cough, but these products are not recommended for children under the age of six and should be used with your doctor’s approval. This is because the ingredients contained within over-the-counter medication may cause severe reactions or unexpected adverse effects. If you’re considering giving your child a cough medicine, it’s best to consult your doctor first. They will be able to give you advice as to which type of medication is safe and suitable for your child’s age. When used properly, cough medicines can help soothe a scratchy throat and make nighttime easier on your little one!
If the symptoms don’t start improving after two or three days of any kind of cough or cold medicine regiment, call your healthcare provider for further advice. It’s important to monitor your child’s symptoms and reaction to any treatment, so be sure to keep track of their progress.