As winter looms in the Southern Hemisphere and as a parent of an amazing and active young lady, I understand that some of us seek natural ways to alleviate our children’s colds and flu symptoms. In this article, I will share gentle, effective home remedies for children.
Remember though to please consult your child’s healthcare provider if symptoms worsen or persist. The information in this article is NOT to be taken as medical advice in any way shape or form.
The following are all natural ways to help your little one get through the dreaded colds and flu season!
Hydration helps with colds and flu
Keeping your child well-hydrated is essential for their recovery. Offer water, herbal teas, or warm broths to help thin mucus and alleviate congestion. For infants, breastmilk or formula is perfect.
Hydration is critical but if they need a little help with their breathing, then you need to consider Saline nasal drops.
Saline Nasal Drops
I love these and although your little one may see it as a little strange, they really work! Saline nasal drops can help relieve congestion by loosening mucus and reducing inflammation in the nasal passages. These drops are safe for all ages and can be purchased over-the-counter or made at home using a simple saline solution (1 cup of distilled or previously boiled water, 1/2 teaspoon of non-iodized salt (iodized salt can irritate and burn).
Honey for sore throats for colds and flu
Honey can soothe a sore throat and act as a natural cough suppressant for children over one. Give your little one a teaspoon of honey before bedtime to help them sleep better. Avoid honey for infants under one though due to the risk of infant botulism.
Capilano is 100% pure Australian honey – delicious and excellent for sore throats and coughs. Amazon.com.au: Capilano 100% Pure Australian Honey, 500g – https://amzn.to/3WGMaEI
You can’t go wrong with essential oils. Oils like eucalyptus, lavender, and chamomile can provide relief from cold and flu symptoms. Use a diffuser to disperse the oils into the air or add a few drops to a warm bath. Always dilute essential oils and follow safety guidelines for use with children.
Amazon.com.au: ECO. Modern Essentials Aroma Essential Oil Kids Sleep Trio – https://amzn.to/44fmYIE
Herbal Remedies for Colds and Flu
Herbs like elderberry, echinacea, and ivy leaf can support your little one’s immune system and alleviate cold and flu symptoms. These herbs are available in child-friendly forms, such as syrups or lozenges. Consult a healthcare professional before using herbal remedies for your child though as you must check for allergies.
Amazon.com.au: Sambucol Black Elderberry Cold & Flu Kids Liquid 120ml – https://amzn.to/3C1ZPwr
If you are of my generation you might remember the scene in the first Crocodile Dundee movie where the use of steam inhalation took on a whole new meaning! Having said that, steam inhalation can help alleviate congestion by loosening mucus in the nasal passages. For kids, a safe method is to run a hot shower with the bathroom door closed to create a steamy environment. Sit with your child in the bathroom for 10-15 minutes, allowing them to breathe in the warm, moist air.
I use a humidifier and best one I have found is the Hysure Q4. Check it out here:
Keeping it really simple, a warm compress can provide relief from sinus pain and pressure. Soak a washcloth in warm water, wring it out, and place it over your child’s forehead and nose for a few minutes. Repeat as needed to help reduce discomfort for your little one, and you!
Probiotics can support your child’s immune system and promote gut health. Consider adding a child-friendly probiotic supplement to their diet or incorporating probiotic-rich foods like yogurt or kefir.
Here is one of the good ones I have found Life-Space Probiotic Powder for Children 60g –
Although we want to prevent our little ones from getting sick, the reality is that they will get sick, so we need to find healthy, natural ways to look after them and that help and support their developing immune system.
I hope the information above will help!