The airways of the newborn are tiny and this exposes him to a greater risk, than the adult, of suffering from colds and coughs .
The most frequent cough in children is of viral origin and therefore does not require drugs; to alleviate the symptoms and promote healing, however, it is advisable to resort to some natural remedies.
Natural remedies for cough in newborns: nasal washes
Nasal washes are an excellent remedy for preventing and treating cough in children of all ages. To do the nasal washes you need a syringe without a needle and a common physiological solution: take 3 or 4 cc of physiological solution with a syringe , remove the needle and spray, first in one nostril and then in the other, holding the head of the slightly tilted infant.
If this method is uncomfortable, disposable vials of physiological solution can be used to spray directly into the nostrils of the newborn, they are found in all pharmacies and in shops specializing in products for early childhood; they are a bit more expensive than larger physiological packs, but in reality they are also more practical and hygienic. When cough is present, nasal washing should be done at least twice a day, morning and evening .
Nasal washes are also very useful for preventive purposes , in which case they can be practiced every other day, preferably in the evening before putting the baby to sleep.
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Other natural remedies for cough in newborns
In addition to nasal washes, in case of cough in the newborn, it may be useful:
- Add a support under the crib, on the side where the baby rests his head , to keep it raised above the body. Coughs, in fact, are more frequent when lying down and this expedient favors the rest of the newborn.
- Doing the aerosol with simple physiological solution , as this practice helps to thin the mucus.
- Make the baby drink as much as possible ; correct hydration, in fact, promotes faster healing as it also helps to thin the mucus.
- Keep the baby warm , in a suitably humidified environment, without covering it too much, to avoid excessive sweating.
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Remedies that should not be used in case of cough in the newborn
Some natural and non-natural remedies should not be used in infants:
- Honey . Honey is a good cough suppressant but is contraindicated in infants; it is recommended for use only in children over one year of age.
- Mucolytics . Mucolytics are contraindicated in children under the age of two and should be used with great caution even in older children; this was stated in an information note from AIFA.
- Nasal decongestants . Nasal decongestants are contraindicated under 12 years of age as they have a vasoconstrictive effect that can cause even very serious side effects.
What about antibiotics ? Antibiotics can also be used in newborns, but they are only useful if the cough hides a pathology of bacterial origin, a condition that will be up to the pediatrician to verify.
Colds in the newborn: natural remedies and advice