Sickness hit our household hard this week. After a few uncharacteristically sleepless nights, a fever and a visit to the doctor, it was determined that K had her first cold. The poor kid was a feverish, whiny, sneezing, coughing, uncomfortable mess. Everything that normally made her happy was failing, and you can’t explain to a three month old that if she would just blow her nose, everything would be better.
Having had my fair share of colds in my lifetime, I’d gotten into a routine of treating them, from the first sniffle to the final hacking cough. Advil Cold & Sinus, medicated nasal spray, a steady diet of Halls, and excess amounts of napping and steamy showers quickly took care of my symptoms. But all of these surefire remedies wouldn’t work for my snotty, feverish little girl. So what have I added to my arsenal for dealing with the dreaded-but-frequent baby cold?
1. Salinex: these saline drops are wonderful for soothing a dry nose and breaking up all of that gunk that accumulates. Sure, your little one will scream bloody murder when you stick the dropper into their nostril – but the sigh of relief when they can breathe again will be worth it. I’ve heard you can also make your own saline drops with salt, water and baking soda…but I happened to have these on hand.
2. Boiron-brand Coryzalia capsules: these came recommended to me by several moms in my area. They are a homeopathic capsule, suitable for kids 1 month and up. You break the plastic cap, and pour the contents into baby’s mouth three times a day. Though I’m sometimes skeptical about things like this, these Coryzalia drops seemed to help when not much else would.
3. Vicks BabyRub: rather than the menthol-heavy adult formula, Vicks BabyRub is made with eucalytpus, rosemary and lavender oils. Its totally safe, and when rubbed on baby’s feet and chest before bed, seems to clear up congestion, help stop the coughing, and help with sleep. Plus it smells awesome.
4. The Nosefrida: I’ll admit, I don’t yet have one of these. But after wrestling with the bulb aspirator that came in our first aid kit, any qualms I had about using this are gone. Its a tube system with a filter; you put one end in baby’s nose, and suck really hard on the other end, drawing all of the snot out. Before you freak out, like I did, envisioning a mouthful of boogers, know that there is a whole filter (and about 8-10 inches of tubing) between your mouth and baby’s nose.
5. Cold-Mist Humidifier: As winter brings painfully dry air, a humidifier is crucial to keep baby from drying out. After some research, I purchased a cold-mist humidifier as opposed to the standard hot-water humidifier. Why? Hot steam breeds bacteria, something we didn’t need any more of in our house. Also, as K gets older and more mobile, the last thing I need is her burning herself on the steam or hot water. So cold-mist it is.
6. Coffee: Okay, so this one isn’t for baby. But after many nights sitting awake in a steamy bathroom, comforting a little one who doesn’t know what is happening to her, caffeine is a necessity. And when you happen to have the flu at the same time (its been a really great week around here), anything to make up for lack of sleep helps.
What are your kiddie-cold essentials? Any tried-and-true tricks to share with the class?