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What’s the best way to treat my child's cold?

Answered on 11th January 2016

Many childhood illnesses, such as cold, get better without any treatment, but you can use certain remedies to ease their fever, pains and general discomfort.

Over-the-counter treatments for the symptoms of a cold are available, even for infants and toddlers. If your child is distressed due to a fever, you could give them infant paracetamol or ibuprofen. Always ensure you use the age appropriate treatment, follow the instructions and stick to the correct dosage.

There are also many other remedies you can try to help your child feel better again:

  • Make sure your child has plenty of rest, because it can help the immune system fight the cold. (All ages) This could be cuddly time in bed or watching their favourite film.
  • To help them sleep, massage some vapour rub - on their chest, (3+ months) or use a vapour plug-in
  • Give them plenty of fluids (extra milk for babies) to prevent dehydration.
  • Clear a stuffy nose with saline drops. You can also use a bulb syringe for babies. (All ages)
  • The steamy vapours from a warm bath can help unblock congestion. (All ages)
  • Prop their head up in bed with extra pillows or towels so they can breathe more easily. (12+ months) With infants, be sure to place any props under the mattress and not inside the crib.
  • If your child is over one year old, mix a little honey with lemon and some hot water to ease their cough. (12+ months)
  • If they have a chesty cough, lay them across your lap on their tummy and gently rub their backs.
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