6 Natural Home Remedies for Toddler Coughs
Coughing in general is a common reflex action to clear the throat for any mucus or foreign irritants.
Since the airway prefers only air passing through the nose, whenever something gets in the airway, it is quickly expelled. athus, coughing can occur due to any foreign material in the airway.
Unlike in toddlers, coughing mostly occurs when the child isn’t feeling well or is fighting off an illness, which will cause the production of phlegm.
But don’t panic moms, a cough is one of the most common symptoms of childhood illness. This may sound awful, however, it really isn’t a call for emergency, unless the child showed severe symptoms.
As a matter of fact, the act of coughing in a toddler is an important reflex to help protect their airways in the throat and chest.
By coughing, it removes the extra mucus and lets air flow pass more easily through the lungs. In most cases, toddler coughs are caused by a respiratory infection.
However, there is a possibility that he/she may just have something stuck in her throat. Well for toddlers, a cough isn’t just a cough, but it has many types.
Here are several types of coughing in children:
This is usually caused by swelling in the upper airway. This mostly comes from a croup, a swelling in the larynx and trachea.
Unfortunately, younger children obviously have smaller airways, and if swollen, can make it harder to breathe.
Children younger than 3 years of age are more prone to croup because of their narrow airways. This can start suddenly and often at midnight.
Most kids with croup will also have stridor — noisy harsh breathing that happens when the child inhales.
This is also known as pertussis — an infection of the airways which is caused by the bacteria named, “Bordetella pertussis.”
Children with pertussis can experience episodes of back-to-back coughs without breathing in between, they’ll eventually take a deep breath that makes a “whooping” sound.
A wheezing or whistling sound when exhaling could mean that the lower airways in the lungs are swollen. This most likely occurs in people with asthma or a viral infection bronchitis.
Additionally, wheezing can occur if the lower airway is blocked. A child might possibly swallow an object which will block the lower airways and cause wheezing.
The majority of cases usually get worse at night. Whenever your child has a cold, the nose and sinus can drain down the throat and trigger a cough during your sleep.
Asthma is also a trigger for nighttime coughs.
Being in a room with cold air or activity can make coughs much worse during the daytime. As cold air makes it dry, thus making you cough.
A cough caused by colds from viruses can last for weeks. Especially if he/she has asthma, chronic infection, or allergies.
A persistent cough for 3 weeks is already alarming, as it may be an underlying condition.
The usual treatment for a cough is a cough medicine but for toddlers under six, it is not recommended and also not safe for children.
For children over the age of one, you can give them a homemade drink for coughs which is done by dissolving honey in warm water and adding a hint of lemon juice.
As toddlers are very young and susceptible to diseases, a cough can easily be contracted. A cough is one of the most common diseases for everyone.
Thus, there are several natural remedies that are safe to use for toddlers:
This is one of the best sources for a natural sweetener. This isn’t just a healthy source for sweetness but it also helps aid a sore throat.
This is due to its many beneficial properties which helps fight infections. This is actually toxic for children under one because there’s a risk of botulism.
However, if your toddler is over one year of age, you can already try giving a spoonful of honey.
Creating moisture in the air will help keep your child’s airways from drying out as well as loosens mucus. Buy a humidifier that has cold air as it is safer for children rather than warm air humidifiers.
Use the humidifier every night, where your toddler sleeps. When your toddler wakes up, still run the humidifier wherever your toddler is staying.
If you don’t have a humidifier, you can try opening a hot shower and covering the spaces or cracks on the bathroom door to keep the moist inside.
Bring your toddler with you in the bathroom and stay there for awhile just to provide some temporary relief.
Generally, when your toddler isn’t feeling well, it is important to give them lots of fluids for hydration. If they’re refusing to drink milk or eat much, instead you should give them water.
As water can help your body fight illnesses.You should give your one-year old one serving per day, on the other hand a two-year old needs two servings per day of water.
Elevate your child’s head
Simply elevating your toddler’s head at night can help alleviate a cough. This will open their airways for mucus to drain.
Or you can also raise the head of the crib mattress by placing a wedge or pillow under the mattress. However, for babies younger than 4 months, consult with your doctor about it.
Children can simply try eating a popsicle of crushed ice for a cough-inducing scratchy throat. A cold popsicle or ice can provide them temporary relief and also happiness as children are known to love popsicles.
Chicken Noodle Soup
This is the most popular food for anyone who's sick. Research shows that chicken soup provides anti-inflammatory properties and other nutrients.
Additionally, eating or drinking something hot will act as a vaporizer, and help loosen mucus in the nasal passages. And that is why your grandma always offers this dish whenever you’re sick.
As stated previously, toddlers aren't recommended with cough syrups because it can lead to side effects and an overdose.
And that explains why many moms or parents stick with these natural remedies in treating a toddler.