10 Cold and Flu Remedies for Infants
Fighting the flu as an adult is hard but there are plenty of medications you can take to reduce those annoying symptoms.
You can take something for fever, for sore throats and coughs, or to help with congestion. However, unfortunately, cold and flu medications do not exist for infants. While you can offer your baby paracetamol or ibuprofen to ease the pain and fever, this is about it when it comes to the medication front. Even then, you should always check with your pharmacist before giving these to an infant. The good news, however, is that there are some home remedies that can help reduce the pain that comes with battling a cold or a flu.
1. Vapour Rubs
Look for infant-friendly vapour rubs, such as Euky Bearub. Vapour rubs are safe to use for babies over the age of three months and provide congestion relief. Gently rub onto your baby’s back and chest.
Breathing in moist air can help loosen the mucus in the nasal passage, making it much easier for your baby to sleep and breathe. Steam humidifiers and cool-mist vapourisers work great and can be found at any chemist.
3. Elevating the Head
When you have a cold, do you find that it is so much worse during the night? This is because all of the symptoms are rushing to your head. This is also the case with babies. Your baby will probably feel more congested and will have mucous during the night, which means you can expect little to no sleep. You may find that they sleep a little better if you let them sleep on you in a chair, where they are elevated.
Give your little one the opportunity to sleep, even if it’s broken sleep. Cancel your outings and focus on letting them get better by offering plenty of chances to sleep. You may even choose to rock them or nurse them more often to help them drift back to sleep.
5. Bulb Syringes
When your baby is too little to blow their nose, then you can look into using a bulb syringe, which siphons the mucous out of your baby’s nose, making it easier for them to breathe. Use the syringe about 15 minutes before a feed to help them latch on to the breast or the bottle.
6. Saline Nasal Drops
These are non-medicated nasal drops suitable for babies from newborn onwards. They are effective in helping to clear mucous buildup and unblock their little delicate sinuses and are available at chemists and some supermarkets. Warning, though: Do not use the saline pump sprays with infants as these are too strong and can damage nasal passages. Only use the drops specially formulated for infants!
7. Extra Fluids
Offer extra breastfeeds and milk during the day and at night. Your baby is most likely not getting a lot each feed as they are too stuffed up or the sucking may hurt their throat. So continue to offer the breast to help keep their fluids up and for added comfort.
8. Blowing the Nose
Once your baby masters the art of blowing their own nose, then things can get a lot easier. However, this normally doesn’t happen until your baby is at least two years old.
There is no better feeling than stepping out of a hot bath all nice and warm. So give your baby the same feeling by offering them a bath followed by a nice massage. You can also get rid of some of that snot that has crusted onto their face while they sleep.
10. Warm Liquids
When your baby is over the age of six months, you can also offer warm liquids to help with their cold. Things like apple juice and soup can soothe the throat and help clear the nasal passage.