The cough syrup aisle is pretty extensive these days, including formulas for children and infants, and it can be hard to know if it’s the right thing to do for your baby, or if there are better options available. There has been some debate over the years as to whether cough medicine does anything at all for younger children infants.
Some important considerations you may be having are how old your child is, how long they’ve had the cough, how bad the cough is, what other symptoms they’re showing, if you should call the doctor first, and how many times they’ve already had cough before, among others. But it’s really not that complicated because you don’t want to give your baby any cough syrup for the first 5-6 years, so it’s simply not a viable option at this time.
This may give you a feeling of being back at the drawing board as far as what you can do for your baby during their time of suffering, but all is not lost. There are at-home and all natural remedies that you can use for your baby in order to get them back to normal, but you have to be patient as well, and let them start to feel better on their own.
Can I Give My Baby Cough Syrup? Answer: Not Recommended
The consensus is that you don’t want to give your baby cough medicine because it’s not going to help them out anyway, and the ingredients it contains can cause further problems to your child. The American Academy of Pediatrics threw parents a curve ball by taking away cough syrup as an option, but what’s very interesting is that rather than defend their products, the makers of them simply stopped selling them. This is proof positive that they were just capitalizing on the concerns of parents and the strong desire to see their babies be healthy.
If your baby is in their first year and older than 3 months you’ll want to avoid giving them cough medicine and stick to more natural remedies that will assist them in overcoming the cough on their own. Before three months it’s best to call the doctor for advice, according to BabyCenter. But really you just want to take cough medicine off the table as a possible solution. It’s not something that works well, and studies have shown it doesn’t have much of an effect.
Keeping a humidifier in your baby’s room can help loosen any congestion they may be experiencing, and is a good way to help them through their cold without exposing them to any medicine that could do them harm. Making changes to your baby’s environment is the number one way to help them get better, as they don’t involve anything taken internally, and can often offer just as much soothing change as any medication. Once you’ve made a few adjustments, it’s time to let Mother Nature help you out and you should start to see improvement rather quickly.
There is an old wives tale that placing a boiled onion in a bowl of water in your baby’s room can also ease a cough and negate the need for cough syrup.
Letting Nature Help
While it can be hard to watch your child suffer, especially if they also have pain and fever, and it could even be keeping you awake at night a cough is not usually a case for alarm. If your baby is older than three months and you’ve followed some alternative therapies for them and provided an environment that promotes getting better, sometimes that’s all you can do. It can be hard to sit by and seemingly do nothing, but in some instances that’s the best thing and you just need to trust that they’ll get better, and know that their little bodies have the ability to heal themselves and get better over time.
Of course if the problem escalates or lingers on longer than it should you’ll want to enlist the help of your pediatrician to see what’s wrong with them. They may end up prescribing them a medication, but this is going to be something that actually works, and not something that is sold on store shelves. They’ll also be able to supply you with the right dosing information so that you know exactly how much to give them, and at what times.