Winter has well and truly arrived here in the UK and with it comes all the coughs, colds and other nasties to make our children poorly.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of feeling utterly helpless when those we love are not feeling their best. Especially if it is a child or a small baby.
We had a rough start to Max’s first year, with his recurrent urine infections, I definitely had my fair share of helplessness in those first 6 months of his life.
While there wasn’t much we could do for Max when he was poorly there are lots we can do when our children have a cough or cold. The normal everyday things that children are prone to picking up.
In babies the first year, they will catch between 6 to 10 colds with those in childcare and nursery picking up to 12 annually.
When your child has a cold or cough it can often seem like the end of the world, for them and for you. Seeing your baby all bunged up is never nice. I thought I would share some of the tips I’ve picked up since becoming a mum 2 years ago.
The best thing for your child whether they have a cold or a cough is to get them in a nice steamy room. Steam is the miracle worker for getting rid of mucus on your child’s chest. It helps to get everything moving and will help to unblock any stuffy noses. You have two options, firstly you can get the kitchen kettle and steam up your bathroom. If your baby is small then it’s best you sit them on your lap in the room (preferably the bathroom but you could do this in any room. I used to steam up Max’s bedroom, though I don’t advise that regularly because the moisture from the steam may cause mould, which would be very bad for baby)
You have two options, firstly you can get the kitchen kettle and steam up your bathroom. If your baby is small then it’s best you sit them on your lap in the room (preferably the bathroom but you could do this in any room. I used to steam up Max’s bedroom, though I don’t advise that regularly because the moisture from the steam may cause mould, which would be very bad for baby). If your child is older then it’s often a good idea to run them a nice relaxing bath and let the steam do its job whilst they have a play.
The second option is to purchase a humidifier. Humidifiers put moisture back in the air, which works the same way as the steam. I have one from Argos and it’s nothing fancy. If you have a good look around there are some really good ones about. I really recommend buying a decent one, it will get a lot of us, especially if your baby is born in the winter time.
Snuffle Babe Menthol Rub
This is the equivalent of Vicks for babies. Vicks is much too strong for delicate noses so snuffle babe is perfect. I put a little on babies feet and a small amount on the chest.
A pre-warning a few squirts of saline up the nose will not make you popular with your child whatever the age. I had to do this for Max who is 2 recently and you would have thought I was trying to torture him. The saline is another way to alleviate congestion.
When Max was a baby I didn’t really bother with the menthol plugin. I felt the smell was too strong and did nothing to help his chest. I’m quite the opposite with Kai, on a few occasions, it has been a godsend. The plug also doubles as a nightlight. The plug gives off a nice menthol scent which aids with blocked noses.
So there you have it my little tips, I’m sure there are many other remedies out there but these are the ones that work for me. Coughs and cold’s suck but it helps to try and remember they won’t last forever.
As always if you are concerned about your child then please do take them to see the GP, especially if they are under 3 months. It is ALWAYS better to be safe than sorry.