Being a mom is a full-time job, and when your child is under the weather with a persistent cough, it can be challenging to find the time to give them extra TLC while managing your daily responsibilities. Thankfully, there are several simple natural remedies you can use to help ease your child's cough to try to prevent a nagging cough from turning into something much worse (like pneumonia). Here are some valuable tips to naturally alleviate your child's cough.
1. Herbal Tea - There are many types of herbal teas that offer specific ailment relief such as coughs. Another option while searching for the perfect herbal tea is to think about your child getting a good night of rest. Chamomile tea is a great choice that can also help to promote calm and a more restful night of sleep. There are also many immune boosting herbal tea blends that may be the perfect option for your child depending on the blend and your child's palate preference. Which ever herbal tea you choose, just be sure to check all ingredients in the blend for children's safety.
Add a dab of honey (elderberry honey is super to maximize more immune fighting power) and lemon to the herbal tea to give a superior immune fighting boost. Honey alone can help ease a cough, allowing a child some relief and better rest. Best of all, most children won't turn down a dab of honey on a spoon!
Lemons are full of antioxidants and vitamin C so they too, make a great addition to a cup of warm tea.
Non caffeinated herbal tea can help keep your kiddo hydrated, which is necessary to keep mucus draining and the body detoxing.
2. Moisture - Adding moisture to the air can be incredibly effective in relieving congestion and soothing a cough. Have your child enjoy a warm lavender and epsom salt bath for about 10-15 minutes so they can benefit from the effects of moisture in the air. You can also use a humidifier in your child's room to keep the air moist, which can help ease their cough. (Always dilute essential oils for bath time in a carrier oil. Also be sure the essential oils used are kid safe and bath safe. The number of drops of the essential oil in the blend for the bath will depend on child's age or health profile.)
3. Hydration - Make sure your child stays well-hydrated. Encourage them to drink water, caffeine free herbal teas, or chicken bone broth or vegetable broths throughout the day. Again, staying hydrated helps to thin mucus, making it easier to expel. Avoid sugary and caffeinated drinks, as they can dehydrate the body and worsen coughs (not to mention they have NO nutritional value which means ZERO immune boosting value or nutrition the body needs).
4. Prop Up the Pillow - Elevate your child's head slightly while they sleep by placing an extra pillow under their head. This can help reduce postnasal drip, which often leads to coughing at night.
5. Use Essential Oils - Some essential oils, like frankincense (Boswellia carterii) and lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), can help ease coughs and that annoying tickle in the throat. Diffuse a few drops of essential oil in your child's room and/or apply a diluted blend to their chest (always follow safety guidelines for essential oil use with children).
You have probably heard peppermint and eucalyptus are also great for coughs. This is true, however, these oils are not recommended for children under ten due to serious potential adverse affects. Check precautions and always use your best judgement with your child and products, as you know your child best. Both of these essential oils are also stimulating, meaning they can prevent an older kiddo (ten and above per safe use) from getting a good night of sleep. Frankincense and Lavender can be very calming, offering a means of support for cough relief and rest which is a win win!
6. Rest and Sleep - Ensure your child gets enough rest and sleep. A well-rested body can heal more efficiently, and a tired child may have a more persistent cough. If your child didn't sleep well during bedtime hours, set them up for a comfortable day time snoozer by making a quiet room a little darker, using nature sound app's to cover up any noises, and snuggling them in cozy and tight so they can get some much needed shut eye.
7. Avoid Lung Irritants - Keep your child away from smoke, strong odors, and allergens, as these can exacerbate their cough. Plug in's, air fresheners, cleaning sprays, and perfumes are all examples of products that can irritate your child's lungs and continue to leave them struggling with a cough. Being aware of these products will truly help your child and for long term health, replacing these items with a more natural options will be a huge benefit to the whole family.
Remember that if your child's cough persists, worsens, or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms, it's essential to consult a healthcare professional. These natural remedies can be helpful to ease a cough and help your child recover, but are also helpful to prevent the cough from worsening or the illness from getting worse. Sometimes no matter how hard we try, we still need to take the kiddos in and this is absolutely okay to protect your child and their ability to breathe. If you are unsure if they need to be seen by your MD or not, taking them in is still doing them good, whether it ended up being needed or not. No Mom guilt for caring!
8. Massage and Chest Tapping - Chest tapping can be done by gently tapping with your fingers put together over your child's chest and upper back. Tapping can help relieve some of the mucus congestion in the lungs. Massage around the shoulders, neck, and back can help promote drainage and detox. Kids love massages just as much as Mom's so be sure to never underestimate the power of gentle massage for immunity.
Being a busy mom doesn't mean you can't provide natural care for your child's cough. By incorporating these tips into your routine, you can help your little one feel better and get back to their happy, healthy selves in no time.
** To discover how to create homemade chest rubs and explore a world of natural remedies tailored to your child's well-being, simply click the button below to schedule a one-hour natural wellness session. You'll leave with personalized product recommendations, a deep understanding of safe usage and blending, and a valuable resource to rely on whenever you need it!
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Jamie Michaels, Natural Wellness Educator & Founder of Children's Wellness Tree
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