Cold Among Kids:
Cold, a viral infectious disease, is a very common among kids. This is an infection of upper respiratory tract. It primarily affects the nose and then throat. The viruses of cold are either transmitted through hand to hand, or hand to surface to hand contact. In fact, the viruses of cold may survive for the prolonged period in the environment and as a result, picked up by the people through hand. Subsequently, these viruses go to home through one member and then spread among other family members. In the case of kids, transmission of these viruses goes through schools, daycare, or the affected family members. As far as new born baby is concerned, infection normally comes through mother.
Symptoms and Causes:
Main symptoms of cold and cough are running nose, sneezing, coughing and sore throat; it is due to the build-up of mucus.
Causes of cold and cough in kids are normally occurrence of virus. There are many viruses which caused cold and cough. But the most common virus responsible for cold is rhinovirus.
Though this cold is not dangerous in healthy children and usually goes away in 4 to 10 days even without treatment. But in the case of newborn and very small kids, its ignorance is not good because it is an infection of upper respiratory tract. And if the viruses entered in the lower respiratory tract, the situation may be risky. It can cause bronchitis, pneumonia or other respiratory problems. Then it becomes necessary that you see your doctor immediately. (1)
The conventional treatment for curing this cold infection is usually use of antibiotics. But these medicines have some side effects and are not good for kids’ immunity. There are some very simple natural remedies that can cure this cold without any side effect.
Natural Remedies of Cold among Kids:
1. Ginger & Basil Juice:
- Extract the juice of a small piece of ginger after cleaning and grating.
- Similarly, crush 8-10 leaves of tulsi and extract juice with the help of a thin cloth.
- Then, mix 4-5 drops of ginger juice and 4-5 drops of basil juice.
- Add one teaspoon of honey and give to your child thrice a day.
- Ginger and basil leaves are natural antibiotics and also safe for small kids. You can give it to your baby for 2-3 days.
Even if you give only ginger juice to your kid with honey at night, the cough and cold will be vanished naturally without any medicines. But the taste of ginger (adrak) is quite different; it is too bitter to give to small kids. So, it is better not to be used below three months of age group.
2. Alum for Cold among Kids:
Alum (fitkari) is a natural antibiotic which can cure cold and cough among kids. To cure dry cough (sookhi khansi) of your kids-
- At first, take some alum (fitkari) and grind it.
- After that keep it on gas in an iron pan to roast and heat till it melts.
- Let it to be cool and again grind to make fine powder.
- Keep this powder into an airtight jar and use when required.
- Give a pinch (½ – 1 gm) of this powder to your child with honey to cure cough. This natural remedy can be used for the kids of above 6 months age group.
3. Figs for Cold among Kids:
To cure cold and cough of your kids – figs work amazingly; you can give it even an infant in a very little quantity.
- First of all soak a dry fig (anjeer) in some water for 3-4 hours.
- After that remove the fig from water and make paste of it.
- Then ingest this paste to your child and repeat the same for 2-3 times in a day.
4. Carom Seeds for Cold among Kids:
- Simply roast some carom seeds on a pan (tava) slightly (for 2-3 minutes) and grind to make powder.
- Likewise, grind some dry ginger to make fine powder.
- Mix carom seeds powder and dry ginger powder (1 gm each) in 1 tsp of honey.
- Now, give it to your child.
- Though this remedy is quite safe for small children but its taste is bitter, so it is good to use for the age group of 6 months and above.
5. Flax Seeds Decoction:
Flax seeds (alsi) decoction (kadha) is a highly effective home remedy for curing chronic cold of kids; it clears chest congestion and remove mucus through stool.
Simply, boil one teaspoon of flax seeds in 200 ml of water for ten minutes. Then, sieve the decoction into a cup and give 2 tablespoons of water to your child every two hours.
6. Swag of Carom Seeds:
If your child is having cold and cough, give lukewarm fomentation (sake) of ajwain on the chest of the child. Take some carom seeds and make a swag (potli) with a soft cotton cloth. Now, heat this swag by putting this on a preheated pan (Tawa) and compress it lukewarm over chest, back, palm and sole of your baby. You can put it near nostrils, so that the baby inhale its smell. It is good to clear blocked nose.
7. Terminalia Chebula for Cold:
Harad or haritaki is a very good medicine of balancing ‘kapha’ for everyone. It can be given to small children too. If your child is suffering from cold and cough, give him powder of harad with honey.
Simply, grind some harad (terminalia chebula) after roasting slightly on a pan (tava). Keep it into a jar after making fine powder. Give 1-2 pinch of its powder with honey to small children twice a day and repeat the same for 2-3 days regularly.
In the same way, you can apply the paste of harad powder (mixing with warm water) on the chest of you child. It also helps to reduce the cough.
(Note: There is no side effect of it; some children might vomit when they consume haritaki for the first time, that is normal and one need not to worry about it. They will get used to it very soon.)
Dosage for Children:
A big pinch (around 2 gm) for children around 3 to 6 years.
A small pinch (around 1 gm) for children between 1 to 3 years.
Caution: Avoid to use of terminalia chebula to small children continuously. If your child has tendency of repeated cough and cold, it is better to consult doctor.
All the above ingredients like- alum (fitkari), dry ginger, carom seeds, flax seeds (alsi), figs (anjeer) and honey remain available in any grocery shop or super market like big bazaar etc. Basil leaves are almost available in each and every house or neighborhood.
All the above said remedies are quite safe and simple but if it does not suit your child stop it immediately. It is better to consult expert before use. Remember, these remedies are not substitute of any medical treatment.