Cough and cold remedies for your baby

Cough and cold in babies is much more a cause of concern than in adults. That’s because over the counter medication is not advisable for children under the age of six and while all kids, by age 4, generally learn how to blow their nose, still younger children can’t even do that. As a result, newborns, infants and toddlers can have a truly tough time with congestion and blocked nose.

We understand it’s a pain to see your baby suffer. That’s why, we bring you a few easy cold remedies for babies that are great help.

Natural cold remedies for babies

Lots of rest

Allow your child lots of rest- fighting the infection usually wears them out. When they’re sleeping, the body is actually healing- so don’t get alarmed by the long hours he may want to spend in bed. When sleeping, it is always better to use towels or an extra soft pillow to prop his head a little up. That will ease his breathing if he has a blocked nose. An alternative sleep position is allowing him to sleep up-right- if your baby’s too small, you may have to sacrifice some comfortable sleep yourself- Sleep in an upright position, on the bed or on the sofa with your baby chest down on your chest/tummy- that should bring some breathing relief.

Oil Massage

Heat a few cods of garlic in mustard oil and give your baby a warm oil massage, preferably out in the sun, rubbing the oil gently but thoroughly onto his chest, neck, back, foot soles and palms. This is one of the best cold remedies for breastfeeding babies- you can even give him a massage at night, before he goes to bed.

Bulb syringes

This is one of the best cold remedies for babies that cannot blow their nose. Squeeze air out of an empty bulb syringe, gently insert the tip of the bulb into your child’s nose, and release the bulb so it can take in the mucus. Pull out the syringe and squeeze the mucus onto a tissue.

Extra fluids

Keep your child well-hydrated- give lots of water and/or fruit juice. This prevents dehydration and thins down nasal secretions, making it easier to clear them out. However, if your baby is less than 6 months old, then you should stick to breast milk, because babies that young don’t need water and too much water could do more harm than good.

Warm liquids

Warm liquids like vegetable or chicken soup (chamomile tea is also great, but your baby should be at least 6 months old) – soothe congestion and brings relief. Again, for babies less than 6 months, stick to breast milk.

Vapor rubs

Vapor rubs, that are suitable for infants are available in the market. These generally contain petrolatum, oils and eucalyptus. They don’t contain camphor or menthol, which is bad for children under 2 years of age. You can buy one or even make your own vapor rub at home for your child (above 3 months of age).


Honey can be a really good remedy for cough and cold for children over a year old. Younger infants can suffer infant botulism from honey, so it’s not advisable for them. One of the best cold remedies with honey is a paste made of basil leaves, turmeric powder and honey- give it to your child on an empty stomach in the morning for best results.

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