Children's cough remedies

Coughing is a reflex action that helps in clearing the throat of foreign irritants or mucus. People cough for clearing their throat, however, frequent coughing can also be a disease. 

Cough and cold that lasts for about three weeks is regarded as an acute cough. In case it lasts for less than eight weeks but improves by the end period then it is a subacute cough. In case the cough lasts for more than 8 weeks then it is called chronic cough. 

What causes cough and cold in children?

Cough and cold are caused by various conditions, with have a chance of being permanent or temporary. Let us look at some of the most commonly occurring reasons. 

1. Bacteria and viruses:

A common cause of cough and cold is respiratory tract infection like a flu or cold. These infections are caused by a specific virus. Cough and cold might last from some days to weeks. If the infection is caused by flu then it might take some time for the cough to clear up along with the help of some medicines. 

2. Asthma:

Another common cause of cough and cold in children is asthma. In this case of asthmatic cold and cough wheezing is involved. 

3. Weakened immune system:

The weakened immune system also increases the risk of cough and cold. In addition to that, if your child suffers from a chronic illness, it also increases the risk of cough and cold. Moreover, children are more susceptible to cough and cold during winter and fall due to the weather conditions. The immune system gets highly affected during that time of the year.

Non-medical remedies that you can refer to for curing cough and cold

Cough and cold might not be severe always. It is a common disease that occurs in children quite often. Consulting a doctor only seems necessary when your child is suffering from acute cough and cold. Otherwise, here are some non-medical remedies that you can refer to when your child is suffering from cough and cold. 

1. Honey:

A few studies have suggested that honey can be used for relieving cough and cold as well as help the child to sleep better during their sickness. Dark honey like buckwheat might work best as they have higher quantities of antioxidants, significantly improving children’s immune system. Children aging one to five years can have half a teaspoon a day and eleven years and above can have one teaspoon a day.

2. Chicken noodle soup:

Research shows that consuming chicken soup is highly beneficial as it has anti-inflammatory properties. The warm temperature of the soup acts like a vaporizer that helps in losing the mucus inside the nasal passages. 

3. Cold or hot drinks:

Very cold or warm liquids can make excellent cough remedies as they helping thinning out the mucus inside the nasal passage. It allows the children to cough up easily. In addition to that, liquids also help in soothing the raw throat. It keeps the children hydrated. You can make your children drink ice water, warm or cold juice, or even decaffeinated tea infused with honey. 

4. Soothing treats:

If your child is aged four years or above, they can suck on cough or soar throat lozenges, frozen berries, or even sugar-free hard candies. Crushed ice or a popsicle are amazing choices for kids with a scratchy cough-inducing throat. 

5. Cool-mist humidifier:

When your kid is suffering from cough and cold, it is good to place a cool-mist humidifier inside the room of your child. It would help your child to loosen nasal and chest congestion. Mold and bacteria grow quickly, hence, you need to thoroughly clean the humidifier and change the water regularly. Apart from that, you can also ask your child to take a steamy shower. 

6. Saltwater gargle:

This is the simplest and most effective cough and cold remedies. Simply mix half a teaspoon of salt in eight ounces of water. Make your child gargle the saltwater mixture. It would help in easing the cough causing throat irritation. Make sure that your child spits the solution. They should not swallow it. 

7. Chest rub:

You can use chest rub to clear the congestion. One of the most famous chest rubs are the ones manufactured by Vicks. A chest rub contains rosemary, lavender, eucalyptus, and aloe. The chest rub helps in warming up the chest area that makes the accumulated mucus loosen up. Your child can later spit out the cough.

When to consult a doctor

Average cough and cold do not require professional medical care. Using the above-mentioned remedies would help your child recover within a short period. However, if the condition of your child worsens and you notice any of the following symptoms, then it is time for you to take your kid to the doctor.

Let us take a look at the symptoms:

White patches on the throat or nostrils.
Swollen glands
Trouble in swallowing
Severe pain
Shortness of breath
Coughing up yellow, tan, green, bloody, or pink foamy mucus. 

These are the signs that the cough and cold has transformed into a bacterial infection such as strep throat that needs the attention of a doctor and antibiotics.


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