The best way to take care of colds is to prevent them with good nutrition and hand washing. But despite our best efforts, all kids will come down with a cold occasionally.
The advantages of natural remedies are, among other things, that they are generally safer than allopathic remedies, less expensive, and easier to administer. Here are some of the more common ways to help ease your child’s colds.
If your child has a fever, fight the urge to attempt to bring down his temperature. Fever is quite helpful at limiting the course of an illness. Generally after a “good fever,” kids get better quickly. Unless your child is listless and not responding to you normally, he’s probably fine. Better to assist his body’s natural attempts to heal itself. Allow your child to rest and avoid over-stimulating him with too much TV or electronic media. Read to him, play card games, and just hold him as much as possible. Allow the chores and other things to wait as much as possible.
If your child has a sore throat, ease it with warm salt water gargles. Honey lemon tea is also nice. Just squeeze a little fresh lemon juice into a mug of warm/hot water and a teaspoon of honey. Homemade chicken broth is also very nice and serves to keep your child hydrated and nourished as well.
Avoid giving your child decongestants and antihistamines when he has a cold. These have been proven to have little effect on colds, and may even be harmful.
Using acupressure may ease the symptoms of a cold and your child may also enjoy it. Consult a guidebook on acupressure and follow suggestions for targeting the bladder, large intestine and lung pressure points.
Vitamin C, Echinacea, and Goldenseal are all traditional remedies for colds. Give your child weight and age appropriate doses of these remedies short term to boost his body’s efforts to heal.
If your child has trouble breathing, try a cool mist humidifier. Be sure to keep it scrupulously clean to avoid mold growth.
Eliminate sugars as much as possible when your child is ill. The same holds true for junk foods. Supporting his body with good nutrition is very important at this time. Fresh vegetable juices, homemade soups, and other easy-to-digest foods that provide hydration should be emphasized.