As a mother who was in perpetual fear of changing seasons (because March- April, and October-November always meant sniffles, sneezes, and congestion in my infant), I can tell you with significant surety that prevention is always better than cure. I hated running to the doctor every now and then because more often than not, my ignoring of early signs and symptoms of an onset of cold meant my little baby had to be administered antibiotics. And the best way to prevent this seasonal cold in babies is home remedies. Here are 6 amazing home remedies you can use to treat cold in babies..
Cold remedies for babies that you can try at home:
It works well for grown-ups and is magic for babies of all ages. Inhaling moist air helps loosen the mucus in the nasal passages. A warm bath has the added benefit of relaxing the baby. The best way to do it is in a steamy bathroom.
Simply let a hot shower on for five minutes in the bath. The best thing to do would be to give your child a warm bath in a steamy bathroom. Let her play in the bath as long as she likes (supervised, of course, unless she’s old enough to be just within earshot).
Additionally, light a vaporizer with a drop or two of eucalyptus oil in the steamy bathroom and sit in this room with the baby for 15 minutes twice a day.
You could even use a humidifier in the room.
2. Extra fluids
Drinking plenty of fluids, especially warm fluids, not only prevents dehydration, thins your child’s nasal secretions (flushing them out), but also soothes the child’s throat. Warm, clear liquids can be very soothing and help relieve congestion. For babies younger than 12 months, simply breastfeeding or bottle-feeding her more frequently is the best way to keep her well hydrated. For older children, plain water is great, but your child might not find it very appealing.
Make a mild concoction of two or three raisins, a piece of cardamom, and a small sliver of cinnamon with a teaspoon of honey, and let your child sip it like tea. You could even feed it using a spoon.
Fresh, homemade soups really do relieve cold symptoms such as headaches, congestion, and fever. Broth is a good alternative for babies who are still getting accustomed to solid foods. Do consult your doctor before trying herbal teas other than chamomile because not all “natural” products are safe.
Stick to breast milk or formula for babies younger than 6 months unless your doctor tells you otherwise.
Honey coats and soothes the throat and helps tame a cough. A few small studies suggest honey can ease coughing and help children sleep better overnight.
Give your child 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of honey, diluting it with a few drops of hot water and a couple of drops of lemon juice (to add Vitamin C).
This is especially beneficial at bedtime.
4. Garlic & Ajwain Pouch
Garlic and Ajwain (carom seeds) are known for their anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties.
Dry roast 2 big cloves of garlic and 1 tablespoon of ajwain on a Tawa (flat pan). Wait for it to cool and once cooled, put it in a small muslin cloth to make a pouch or potli. Keep this pouch in the crib where the baby sleeps.
The garlicky ajwain smoke will help to open the blocked nose and provide relief from congestion. If you are worried that this could be a choking hazard for the baby, then you can also dry rub the potli under her feet.
Also read, How to clean your baby’s nose?
5. Turmeric paste
For cold in babies above 6 months, mix turmeric powder with a little warm water to form a paste.
Take the turmeric paste in a ladle and heat it. Switch off once warm. Apply the lukewarm turmeric paste on the chest, forehead, and feet.
The heat from the turmeric absorbs mucus and phlegm and provides relief from seasonal cold.
6. Oil massage followed by sunbathing
My baby loved massages as an infant and the first thing I began doing at the onset of even the slightest nip in the air was an oil massage with a special oil.
Simply warm a boil a bowl of mustard oil with a clove of garlic and a pinch of rock salt. Once cooled, add two drops of eucalyptus oil and store in a glass bottle.
Warm it slightly before massaging your baby (avoid the face and armpits and folds of the delicate skin around the crotch) and let her sunbathe to absorb the oil. Leave a little extra on the baby’s back and chest. Bathe after 30 minutes with warm water.