Last week, we covered sickness prevention and a few ways to stop it from spreading throughout your family. This week, we’re covering intervention (for when those nasty little buggers get through)! As I mentioned before, unfortunately the bugs got the best of us this winter. Starting in September (when baby #3 arrived), I wasn’t as diligent with our daily dose of probiotics, so that may have allowed these “super bugs” to invade. Either way, when sickness slowed us down this winter, I used the following remedies to make sure my kiddos recovered as quickly as possible:
- Luke Warm Elderberry Ginger Tea
- This simple drink has lots of good bacteria fighting components with Vitamin C and tummy easing herbs. I would make my older kids about 8oz each to sip on throughout the day. Here’s the quick and easy recipe:
- Boil 16oz water
- Steep Ginger Tea (organic ginger tea with no natural flavors, like this Numi Decaf Ginger Lemon tea) for 5 minutes and squeeze out all the excess
- Wait for tea to reach room temperature or add in purified cold water to cool
- Squeeze in half a lemon
- Stir in 1 tablespoon elderberry syrup (Gaia Herbs is the best and gives it sweetness and a pretty purple color)
- Stir in ½ teaspoon UDO’s Choice infant’s refrigerated probiotic powder
- Steam Room (aka your bathroom)
- This is followed by lots of nose sucking (which sounds glamorous, I know). But it’s heartbreaking when you have a baby that has congestion, a cold or a cough and there’s nothing you can do about it but wait it out. Turn on the shower to the hottest setting (obviously never with your baby in it) and put a towel under the door to prevent steam from escaping. Put your baby in a comfortable upright position (I use the car seat) and start running the shower while you sit with your baby (outside of the shower) as the bathroom gets steamy. The humidity should break up the mucous and help ease the cough. Immediately after, use a Nose Frida which is a life saver, and suck out all that gunk (don’t worry it never touches your mouth).
- If your kiddo is sick, don’t send them to school (or any of their regularly scheduled activities). PLEASE. Not only is it not fair to all of the other kids out there, it’s not good for your little one either. If they’re sick, it’s a message from their bodies that they need to rest. The more you put off rest, the longer it’s going to take for them to heal. For my kids, I let them watch TV, be mellow in the house with a book, and do arts and crafts inside if they feel like it, but I don’t push them to do much of anything when they don’t feel good.
- Extra Probiotics
- I give my kids an extra dose of probiotics (which I consider more of a “medicinal dose”) if they get sick. Certainly, consult your pediatrician beforehand but it’s always been beneficial for us. As a breastfeeding mom, I also take extra probiotics to make sure my babe is getting them through my milk. I also mix a little bit of the UDO’s Choice infant’s refrigerated probiotic powder into her Once Upon a Farm food (her fave right now is Baby Bear Butternut!) if she isn’t feeling good.
- Vitamin C
- Incorporating more vitamin C into your little one’s diet is important. And when they’re sick, the more vitamin C the better as it helps boost the immune system (1). Brightly colored veggies and fruits (like mango!) are sources of vitamin C. And if mango is your fruit of choice, Magic Velvet Mango is a great throat soother for little ones as well!
- For babies, prop them up a tad at night and run the humidifier (again, only after checking with your pediatrician). We slightly propped up the crib by folding up a blanket underneath and ran a warm mist humidifier to help ease breathing throughout the night.
- Cough Syrup
- Zarbees Cough Syrup for babies was also a life saver. This magical concoction of herbs and agave syrup (not honey) temporarily alleviated the coughing so my little one could sleep better throughout the night. I prefer this baby-friendly brand because I’ve found most other cough syrups have processed sweeteners or contain honey. If your kiddos aren’t a fan of cough syrup, my other go-to is a Loleez Organic Throat Soothing Pop (get 25% off through Friday, February 23 with code: Lolleez1). They’re infused with organic honey (so they’re not for our littlest loves, but older kids love them) and natural fruit pectin to soothe little throats. Plus, they taste delicious!
- Essential Oils
- They’re… essential. Not only do these concentrated oils contain bacteria fighting components, they also smell good and help open up air passage ways. I rub Oilogic Stuffy Nose & Cough Essential Oils on my babe’s feet, ears, chest, and back of the neck.
- Lots of Love
- Possibly the most important remedy. Extra love never hurt anyone and I truly believe it can speed up the healing process. So, love ‘em up!
Unfortunately, there's no one way to 100% prevent your little ones from getting sick, but I think it's our job as parents to be as preventative as possible and to help them feel better faster if they're not feeling their best, so hopefully these tips for prevention and intervention will help!
Cassandra Curtis, Co-founder + Chief Innovation Officer, Once Upon a Farm
Cassandra is a mother of 3 girls. She lives in San Diego with her husband, daughters, 2 cats and a dog. Cassandra works full time as co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer at Once Upon a Farm and as a mom. In the rare free time that she does get, she loves to do Yoga (she is a certified yoga teacher), cook healthy meals, run, travel, and spend time with friends and family.