“Cough cough” Charlotte came down with her first cough ad it is the saddest thing to see her go through having it all day. She keeps telling us she’s “a little bit sick.” It is definitely that time of year for all of us in my house and on top of it, Char just started school so she’s bringing home extra germs.
It is no longer recommended for any child under 6 to take over the counter cough medicine. Luckily, mother nature has some tasty, easy and effective ways to combat cold season.
1. Steam- Humidifiers (cold steam) are your friend. Help your little ones loosen up mucus overnight with these. Add a few drops of eucalyptus, peppermint and rosemary essential oil to the water for a homemade Vicks. Sitting with them in the shower also works wonders.
2. Honey- in anyone over 12 months, honey is a sore throat’s ally. It’s shown to work better than over the counter cough syrup and no one complains about the taste! Give 1-5 year olds a teaspoon or mix it into warm water with fresh ginger and lemon for a soothing tea.
3. Avoid dairy- Dairy doesn’t cause more mucus, but it does thicken the mucus you already have and lead to more throat and nose irritation. Switch to almond or soy milk in you little ones granola. Just remember to grab the unsweetened variety.
4. Liquids- a runny nose leaves our child at a greater risk for dehydration. Encourage drinking fruit juices cut with coconut water which acts as natures Gatorade, electrolytes and all. Popsicles work well too!
5. Saline- A little salt water goes a long way to thinning out mucus. Squirt a few drops in your baby or toddler’s nose at key times like waking up and before bed time or nap.
6. Chicken Soup- Chicken soup made from scratch has tons of antioxidants and very good for you bone marrow. And it makes you feel all warm and happy inside. (Post coming soon!)
7. Elevate- The nasal passages will be much clearer with a pillow under your child’s head.
8. Limit sugary foods- Sugar is shown to cause inflammation in the body and suppress the immune systems ability to fight off colds. It’s a good plan to limit sugar in general, but particularly when your child is sick.