Colds and coughs in kids can be really miserable both for the child and the weary parents trying to get some sleep. And since a regular cough can last up to two weeks, during this period it is important to keep your child comfortable, relaxed, hydrated and make sure he/she sleeps well. There are many different things that can cause coughs and the most common one is a respiratory tract infection. Kids usually experience 6 to 12 respiratory tract infections per year, mostly caused by viruses.
Acid reflux, asthma, allergies, sinusitis are also common causes of cough. With so many causes, naturally, there are also many different treatments. You can use saline nasal drops if your kid has productive cough as they help soften the mucus in order to remove it. Don’t forget to keep your little one hydrated. Popsicles are a good idea in this case as they increase the fluid intake and soothe a sore throat. Honey is a natural sweetener that has antibacterial properties which help fight infections. You can also humidify the air in your home by using a humidifier. This will help your kid’s airways from drying out and will loosen the mucus.
However, in most cases, these home treatments alone are not enough. You might also need to use some cough medicine. Cough syrups are an effective medication that provides relief as they work in a way that blocks the cough reflex. Before choosing a cough medicine, make sure you consult with your child’s doctor first. If you don’t have any experience with these medications so far, here is a list of the best ones you can find in pharmacies.
- Bisolvon Chesty Kids Strawberry
This syrup is for coughs in which the chest is congested with mucous that kids find difficult to cough up. Most of the time, in productive coughs you can hear a rattle in your child’s chest when they cough or breathe. It is a quite effective solution for productive cough but it is not recommended for kids under the age of six. When it comes to dosage, kids over twelve years and adults can use 10ml three times per day, but kids between six and eleven years should use it only if prescribed by a pharmacist, a doctor or a nurse practitioner.
- Blackmores Kids Chesty Cough
This cough syrup has a tasty fruity flavour and it helps provide relief from chest congestion and coughs. Unlike Bisolvon, this medicine is suitable for younger kids, specifically for kids from 2 years. Blackmores Kids Chesty Cough is a sugar-free syrup based on an extract of ivy leaf that aids with respiratory congestion and coughs and helps loosen chest mucus. It contains no additional flavours and colours and also it doesn’t contain ingredients likely to cause drowsiness.
- Brauer Kids Manuka Honey Chesty Cough
This syrup for kids is made of ingredients that are traditionally used in homoeopathic and herbal medicine to relieve mucus and chesty coughs. The best thing about this medicine is that it is gluten and lactose-free. Also, there are no artificial colours and flavours. It encourages children to drink more water keeping their throat moist, which will help them to thin down and loosen mucus. My advice is to use a steam vaporiser that keeps the air warm and moist, especially during the night. Keep your kid away from environments where people smoke and avoid moving him/her from cold or warm air environments too quickly. Kids from 2-12 years old should use 5ml of the syrup every four hours.
- Brauer Baby and Child Cough
This is another cough medicine Australia pharmacies offer in their range. The syrup includes ingredients like homoeopathic Ipecacuanha root and Sundew which are traditionally used in homoeopathic medicine for temporary relief from chesty and dry coughs. It is safe for kids from two years of age but it can also be used for kids under the age of two only when advised to do so by their healthcare professional.
- Benadryl Childrens Cough
This syrup can provide relief from wet, productive coughs as well as from dry coughs in kids over two years of age. It contains ingredients like Hedera Helix – traditionally used for soothing and relieving congestion and coughs, which thins and loosens phlegm and clears chesty coughs. It is also known for relieving wet productive and dry coughs. The other ingredient is Lectoferring – Bovine that helps in boosting the immune system and helps the body to fight against mild infections. It is colour and sugar-free with a honey lemon flavour. The recommended dosage is once every 12 hours, not more than two doses in 24 hours.
Although most colds and coughs in kids do not cause some serious health complications, they still make parents anxious. Most kids will get better on their own with time so they may not even need medicine. However, it is always a good idea to visit your child’s doctor and ask for advice regarding any treatment or medicine you’re considering. Professional advice will certainly bring you peace of mind and ensure you are giving the right medication in the right doses to your child.