Dr Russ Blog - Honey for Your Child's Cough - Use Caution
Honey for Your Child's Cough - Use Caution
Created on 9/13/2013
Young children frequently get viral upper respiratory tract infections (colds).
The good news is that kids usually get better on their own in a few days.
Still, we parents often feel the need to give them something to help relieve bothersome symptoms. Research over the past decade suggests this might not be in our kids' best interest - most over-the-counter children's cough and cold remedies have little effect.
Worse, some of them can be dangerous for kids.
To be honest, most children don't need anything to help them get over a cold - they are strong and resilient enough that their own healing systems will clear the infection.
But if your child is coughing at night, preventing them (and you) from getting needed rest, there is a natural remedy that could do them good while also tasting good:
In a small number of studies honey has been shown to help reduce nighttime coughs in kids with colds.
When kids suffering with a cough and cold are given a little more than a teaspoonful of honey they often experience a reduction in nighttime cough, which helps both child and parent.
One important warning - DO NOT GIVE HONEY TO CHILDREN UNDER ONE YEAR OF AGE.
Doing so is associated with a very dangerous illness called botulism.
Most children with a cold who are coughing at night won't need any type of intervention save your love and plenty of fluids. But if you want to give them something they'll likely enjoy and that might help them get some sleep, try a small amount of honey (as long as they're not less than one year old).
And maybe brush their teeth afterwards - honey can stick to the teeth and contribute to cavities.
** Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment. **
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