Children’s growth and development is so rapid and their immune system is consistently faced with new situations and experiences.
Homeopathy sees colds, coughs and other illnesses as a sign of a healthy immune system, but will step in with treatments when the condition starts to become too painful or reduces their strength.
Although homeopathic remedies for coughs can be effective, these can prove tricky as symptoms tend to transform over time, thus requiring a different remedy.
In certain circumstances, it is necessary for a sick child to be seen by a doctor urgently, such as when the child has a persistent high fever with constant vomiting or diarrhoea; a rash which does not go pale when a glass is held firmly on it; is particularly floppy; unresponsive to your voice; or unconscious.
A common cause for parents to take their babies or toddlers to the doctor is a cough.
Homeopathy for Coughs
Pulsatilla is commonly used for chesty coughs that follow colds, especially during winter.
When dealing with these types of illnesses, Pulsatilla can be effective if the child is sensitive, tearful, clingy, and wants to be cuddled; they also tend to feel worse in warm rooms and need fresh air.
This remedy can help thick yellow mucus run from their nose, as well as concurrent conjunctivitis.
Additionally, the cough may worsen at night when lying down and make it difficult to drink liquids.
The distinct feature of Pulsatilla is that the kids are generally reluctant to drink, even in good health, they are often thirstless.
Phosphorus – If the cough is dry, tickly and exhausting, or hard and barking – made worse by laughter or talking – Phosphorus might be worth considering.
These children can be sensitive like their Pulsatilla counterparts but feel cold rather than heat and are very thirsty for iced drinks.
When ill, ice cream is a preferred indulgence and nose bleeds can accompany a cold or cough.
The onset of the cough may be caused by changes in atmosphere or temperature, resembling asthma with wheeziness. Older toddlers may even report chest pain due to airway constriction.
Generally, these children are intelligent and loving though they get tired easily and can become moody easily.
Bryonia – Samuel Hahnemann, the founder of modern homeopathy, was among the first to test Bryonia, derived from white bryony. Coughs that respond well to this remedy typically arise after exposure to cold and are dry in quality, akin to the Phosphorus cough. Children doing well on Bryonia tend to be more irritable and dislike being disturbed; they prefer peace and quiet as opposed to those benefitting from Phosphorus, who will often want company. Additionally, a cold may travel down into their chests and worsen any pre-existing asthma conditions.
A cough is the body’s natural response of an inflamed throat or lungs to swelling of tissue, mucus or pus. The cause of the cough must be addressed and not the symptom.
Soothing cough syrups, such as homemade honey and lemon syrup, can help reduce dryness in a sore throat, but are largely ineffective for chest pain because the mucus drips down the back of the throat. This is especially true when lying down at night.
In the UK, decongestant cough medicines should only be given to children under two years old after consulting with a doctor.
Therefore, homeopathy can be a great option for sick children with minor self-limiting illnesses as described above.
This article is intended purely for educational purposes, and the reader should make their own enquiries and seek out the guidance of a medical professional.