Many parents are surprised and often delighted to discover that there are many effective home remedies for a child’s cough that do not involve an over-the-counter cough medicine or cough suppressant. It is easy to feel good about using one of the methods described below to deliver relief to a coughing child. Not only are these methods natural, but they have proven to be effective. It is little wonder that some of these treatments have been used for centuries.
Moistening the Sinuses
Dry sinuses can be painful and also leave the throat and nose feeling scratchy and irritated. This may lead to a dry cough that is hard to shake. There are many solutions. A humidifier can keep a child’s room feeling comfortable (especially in winter) and may help prevent a cough before it has a chance to start. If the sinuses are already dry, the use of a personal nasal steamer either with or without aromatherapy oils can deliver a steady stream of moisture to the sinuses.
The same thing can be done by allowing a child to breathe in steam over a pot of heated water. The water should not be too hot to risk scalding from the steam and this should only be done with adult supervision.
Obviously, smoking around a child should be avoided and smoke from a woodburning fireplace can also irritate the sinuses. Dry, irritated sinuses can cause a cough, but can be avoided and sometimes the best dry cough home remedy is simple prevention.
Using the Sweet Stuff
A teaspoon of honey is a sweet solution that has proven to be quite effective in relieving a youngster’s cough. Honey coats the throat and works especially well on those children that complain of a tickling sensation in the back of their throat. Honey should NOT be given to a child under one year old, because there may be a risk of infant botulism.
Rock sugar candy is another sweet that is used by many to stop a child’s cough. Again, this is a natural solution and kids love the taste of it. This is also a popular choice for strict vegans and a great alternative for those who can’t take honey.
One other mixture that works well is grinding equal parts raisins and sugar and warming in a pan until a thick sauce is achieved. Once cool, a spoonful of this will help a child beat a cough and sleep peacefully.
Hot liquids always provide comfort to a sick child and there are some great hot beverages that provide cough relief. Ginger tea is used all over the world to reduce coughing. It can be regular tea with a few drops of ginger or a stronger blend made from ginger root. Regular tea sweetened with honey may also help a child sleep better with less coughing.
There are so many home remedies for coughing, but not all are easy to use on a child. Most children will rebel at exotic and strong tasting herbal remedies. The options listed above are usually easy to administer without a kid complaining. They may even enjoy their “medicine”!