Naturally Treat Flu Symptoms in Your Child
Influenza, also known as the flu, is a contagious viral infection that quickly spreads from person to person. Kids are more susceptible because they are often in school or daycare with other children and it is nearly impossible to keep germs isolated. Since the flu is a virus that will run its course in the body, which lasts approximately five days, it is good to try and treat it with natural products and lots of rest. The following steps will help keep the flu under control and your child out of the doctor’s office.
1. Encourage your child to get plenty of rest. This is a challenge when there are so many things for them to do, but rest helps the body recover from viral illnesses such as the flu. Try to limit your child‘s time playing games and watching television. These activities take energy and that energy is best used by resting and allowing the body to fight off the illness.
2. Encourage your child to wash her hands frequently to avoid spreading the germs. Things such as door knobs, handles, countertops and toys are some of the best places for germs to hang out. Frequent hand washing can help prevent other people from getting sick. Regular soap will do, but if you’d like, invest in an antibacterial soap during the flu season, which is November through April.
3. Offer your child foods rich in Vitamin C to help strengthen the immune system. If your child does not feel like eating, have him drink something with Vitamin C in it.
4. Offer healthy fluids like ginger tea and vegetable broth. These fluids keep the mucous thin and help clear the body. Anise and mullein tea are also great because they are both natural expectorants. And if you can get your child to eat a small piece of garlic, do so. Garlic has great antibacterial properties and can keep infections from becoming worse.
5. If your child enjoys taking a bath, run a warm bath and put in a few drops of essential lavender oil. Lavender has both antiseptic and antibacterial properties and can help soothe a cough or minor irritation. Lavender also has a calming effect on children, and it is good to help them settle down before bedtime.
6. If your child can tolerate the taste, echinacea can also help boost the immune system. Visit a local market such as Whole Foods or health store and find out the specific dosage for your child.
7. To clear stuffy noses and swollen, pink eyes that often accompany the flu, use breast milk. Putting just a drop or two into the eyes or nose works very well. You can do this several times a day. If you are not lactating, ask a friend to loan you just a few ounces. You should notice results by the next day.
8. There is a wonderful homeopathic medicine called Oscillococcinum that treats flu-like symptoms in both adults and children. It has no side effects, drug interactions and is non-drowsy. It comes in quick-dissolving pellets and can be found at your local drug or food store.