Some home remedies for cough and cold in infants can include giving breast milk, saline drops, a combo of garlic and bishop weed seeds, tomato and garlic concoction, honey, onion juice, camphor, pure garlic and mustard oil.
A toothless grin that your baby beams at you, is all you need to drive away all your blues and tiredness. It is needless to say that your new born becomes your world and you will go to any lengths to keep her from harm. And, when this little bundle of joy’s chest is in pain due to a cough, your heart sinks.
Your baby can get cranky and restless when she has contracted a cough or cold. While seeing your baby’s pediatrician is the first thing you should be doing, we also suggest a list of home remedies that are safe to try and will ease your baby’s discomfort almost instantly.
7 Home Remedies for Cough and Cold in Infants
Babies up to 6 months old:
This is perhaps the most crucial and delicate phase in your life when you may be scared to make the smallest of changes in her daily schedule with the fear of her falling sick. Remember your baby’s first cold? It is easily the most heart wrenching time for a new mother. Add to the worry, is the sleepless nights spent in comforting a cranky baby with a cold.
If your baby is less than 6 months, it is prudent that you are careful about what you do to treat that nasty cold.
Most babies under 6 months, do not need anything more than just breast milk that is loaded with antibodies that will kick into action and help your baby’s body fight the infection. Breast milk will also help build your baby’s immunity and hydrate his body to help fight germs better.
If your baby has a very stuffy nose, you can try a saline drop that is harmless and has no side effects whatsoever. While you can buy a bottle of saline drops at a nearby drug store, you can also make it at home. Sterilize a steal bowl and spoon in really hot water. Add ½ teaspoon of salt to 8 teaspoons of warm and water. All the salt water to cool down and drop in no more than 2 drops into each nostril to decongest your little one’s blocked nose.
Kitchen and home ingredients put to use:
1. Garlic and Bishop Weed Seeds
Garlic and Bishop Weed or carrom seeds are potent cold remedies that are safe to use on an infant. Known to possess anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties, both these kitchen ingredients can do wonders in calming a baby that has a bad cold. All you need to do is roast 3 medium sized cloves of garlic and a handful of carrom seeds in a pan. Once they have cooled bundle them up in a clean muslin cloth. Place this bundle in the crib that your baby sleeps in. The fumes emanating from this pouch will work in decongesting the nasal passage of an infant suffering from a cold or cough.
2. Concoction of tomato and garlic
If your baby is over 6 months old, you can try this remedy. A popular cold cure in the Indian subcontinent, tomato and garlic are first steamed together and then pureed and brought to a simmer. You can add some cumin as seasoning to make this more potent. But, remember to filter the cumin before you give it your baby.
While some doctors opine that honey may not be a good for infants, a few drops can do wonders in taming and soothing a cold that refuses to abate. Simply dip your finger into a bottle of honey and let your baby lick it off. He will not just love it, but it will reduce the congestion caused by a cold or cough
4. Onion juice
Many mothers who have tried onion juice for their heavily congested babies will tell you that this indeed works. Onion can, not just clear a congestion, but also will fight the cold and heal a fever in an infant. Simply grind an onion and dilute it before giving you baby a few teaspoons of it.
Heat a few teaspoons of coconut oil in a cup. Add a pinch of camphor powder to this. While the oil is still a little warm, pour in 5 or 6 drops of it on your palms. Now, gently apply this to your child’s chest and massage. The camphor combined with your touch will give your baby immense relief. Remember, not to use more than a pinch of camphor as your baby’s skin is very sensitive and too much camphor can cause a skin allergy.
You tried garlic and carrom seeds. Now, it is time you try just garlic if your baby suffers from a mild sore throat and stuffy nose. Steep a few pods of garlic in 50 ml of hot water for about 15 minutes. Once it has cooled you can give 2-3 sips of it a day to relieve the symptoms of a bad cold. Be sure to try this on babies over 6 months of age and do not give over a few sips a day.
7. Mustard oil
Combine a few teaspoons of mustard oil with crushed garlic and carrom seeds in a pan over a medium flame. After it has cooled, use a strainer and strain the mixture. Store the mixture in a clean bottle. As and when needed, warm a few drops of the oil and gently massage onto your child’s chest, forehead and throat.
Babies Over 1 Year of Age:
Your child is considered an infant till he turns two! And the following remedies can be a blessing in disguise if your child is prone to colds and coughs.
1. Ghee or Clarified Butter
This remedy in particular helps treat a dry cough effectively. Heat 2 to 3 tablespoons of ghee in a pan. To this add a few peppercorns. Crush or grind the mixture and give your baby a little of it through the day.
This herb that is known to impart a lovely aroma and flavor to food, can be put to use in treating a persistent cold. It possesses antioxidant properties and is also a well-known antibacterial agent making it a potent cold remedy. Combine 1 teaspoon of honey with a quarter teaspoon of cinnamon powder and give this mixture to your baby once in every 4 hours.
3. Lemon juice
Lemon like you may already know is a rich source of Vitamin C and helps in improving immunity. For babies over 1 year, make a juice out of freshly extracted lemon juice, water and a teaspoon of honey.
These tried and tested remedies that can help you in treating your baby and rid of that nasty cold and cough in a jiffy! Try them and share your experience in the comments section below.