Cold and flu season is in full swing and if your little ones are anything like mine, it’s during the first week or so of school holidays that they come down with something. While our natural impulse can be to reach for the Calpol or the cough syrup, sometimes there are more natural methods of soothing the symptoms.
*Disclaimer: We are not medical experts – if you are worried about your child don’t hesitate to take them to a medical professional for evaluation. These are simply some suggestions of more holistic methods of easing the symptoms of the common cold.
Maybe it’s obvious, or maybe it doesn’t seem that important, but allowing your child to rest and recoup when they’re poorly can help them to fight of any infection faster. Oftentimes we hear that “it’s only a cold” and are encouraged to push through but if we actually took a day or two to rest we’d bounce back a lot faster. The same holds true for kids!
Keeping hydrated can help to flush out any toxins causing your child to be poorly. Straight water is great but if your little one wants something a but more flavourful try herbal teas, soups or the best cold-busting concoction mentioned below.
When I was growing up, the second my mum detected the first hint of a sniffle she would get out the echinacea. It’s available in various forms – tablets, drops and syrups to name a few. I always just put a few drops of pure echinacea oil on a tissue and place it on my pillow or tuck it into the neck of my top and I find that it really helps to clear my head.
- Ice lollies
Yes, you read that right! Ice lollies are a great kid-friendly way of soothing a sore or tickly throat. But I’m not talking the store-bought kind which is full of sugar and additives. Whipping up some healthy ice lollies takes no time at all and only a handful of easy-to-find ingredients. Here’s a post from BBC Good Food to give you some inspiration – feel free to adapt as necessary!
- Cold-fighting brew
There are various levels to this brew – some kids will take the full-blown version, others might be fussier, but each of the ingredients in this drink have fantastic cold-busting properties. So even if your little one will only take 1 or 2 of them, they’ll still be benefitting.
What you’ll need:
- 250ml water (more for a weaker tea, less for a stronger brew)
- ¼ tsp fresh grated ginger (or less dried powdered ginger)
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp honey (not for those under 12 months – maple syrup can be substituted as a sweetener but does not have the same healing properties)
- Juice of ½ a lemon
Put all the ingredients except the honey into a pot and bring to the boil.
Simmer for 10 minutes.
Strain then stir in the honey.
For more adventurous kids (or adults) you can also add a dash of cayenne pepper – if that doesn’t clear out those sinuses I don’t know what will!