Don’t we all feel helpless when we see our little one suffering from illness? Among all child illness, cough and cold are the most common. A certain research has found out that kids miss nearly most of the days at their school due to cold. Also once your toddler starts going to school, the chances of a contracting cough and cold increases manifold as they come in contact with dirt, bacteria, virus, and pollution and with many more children.
It is impossible to protect your child from catching a cold, but you can definitely reduce the frequency of falling sick and increase your child’s resistance to a certain level.
Make sure your child is sleeping well -
Is your child catching on her beauty sleep? Just like adults, kids need to get their adequate hours of sleep. If your child feels tired often and lies down frequently, they may be a chance that her immune system is sluggish and cannot respond strongly to infections and diseases. If you have a preschooler or toddler, a minimum of 12 – 14 hours of sleep is mandatory.
Teach hygiene -
How hygienic is your child? There are around 80% of infectious diseases that spread through touch, cold is one of them. Teach them how to wash hands well with an anti-bacterial soap. Encourage washing for a few minutes on both sides of the hand until it lathers up thick and well.
Hygiene in the house -
It is advised to maintain hygiene especially during seasonal changes when children are more prone to catch a cold frequently. If someone in the house has a lingering cold, it gets quite a challenge to disinfect the house and belongings. Virus thrives on things like cup, towels, laptops or other frequently touched objects for atleast a couple of hours. Wipe immediately after use with an anti-bacterial wipe. If you toddler is having a cold, keep a kerchief handy so that it can be used while sneezing or coughing.
While these are a few ways to prevent cough and cold in your toddlers, below are some natural tips on how to treat and soothe cough & cold at home.
Honey and Tulsi –
While prescribed cough medicines are our go-to when our kid is suffering from cold, but it has been found that cough suppressants actually have adverse effects on children. It makes them hyperactive, drowsy at school and restless at bedtime.
Honey is the best and safest option if you wish to treat cough at home naturally. Mix half a teaspoon of honey with some at-home pounded tulsi juice and feed your child twice or thrice a day. It will not only induce better sleep but also clear the airway of all the mucus. This is a safe at-home remedy for children above 1 year.
Never give honey to baby below one year as they may get botulism from the bacteria present in honey.
Warm soup –
Nothing better and healthy than a bowl of warm chicken soup with some ginger and pepper powder in it. This soup has anti-inflammatory properties and also acts as a vaporizer clearing mucus from the nasal passages.
Encourage drinking liquids –
Cough and cold often makes your little one dehydrated. You must encourage your child drinking a lot of fluids so as to thin out the mucus and cough it out easily. A glass of warm milk with a pinch of turmeric or hot chocolate soothes a sore throat and gives comfort. It will also ease her stuffy nose.
Use a propped up pillow –
Due to stuffy nose and difficulty in breathing, toddlers with cold are not able to sleep through the night. So how can we easily put them to sleep? Use a couple of pillows so that your baby’s head is raised at a certain angle. This will ease their breathing while helping them fall asleep fast.
Feed them easy-to-swallow food – As parents, we have all gone through that difficult drill of feeding toddlers when they have a cold. Since their throat gets scratchy and sore, it hurts when they have to swallow food; so they refuse food altogether. You can cook them warm foods like chicken broth or porridge, some milk or a warm chocolate pudding.
These at-home remedies are much better than OTC cough syrups. Try these at home and your child will feel better soon.