I'm Ashlee, and I'm a colourful change maker, having fun whilst improving wellbeing outcomes for our communities!


An Old One.... on Coughs & Colds

Supporting youngsters through winter...

It can be difficult treating colds, coughs and flu’s in young children, especially babies, because conventional medicines are usually unsuitable (cough medications shouldn’t be given to children under the age of 6, and there are no night-and-day capsules for them either!).

Prevention before cure = Maintain good immune health with lifestyle medicine – exercise, nutrition, sleep.

*Ensure regular time outdoors, even in winter! Walks, kicking a ball around, playing in muddy puddles, winter sport all contribute towards positive movement and lots of fresh air for healthy lungs! The sunlight helps with eye health and maintaining healthy Vit D levels.

*Create moments! – Have screen-free rest time each day and read books, colour in, or play lego together. This ticks the connection box with your child, contributes to managing their emotions and stress and supports better sleep.

*Immune boosting foods – fortify your autumn and winter meals with lots of fresh garlic, ginger and vit c foods. Eating in season is a great way to do this – fruiting citrus trees during the cold months! – alongside soups and stews that allow you to pack in lots of vegetables and nutrition. Utilize the pressure and slow cookers for ease.

However despite our best efforts, the inevitable coughs and colds will arrive – essential for our immune systems to flex their weight and protect us.

Stock up a natural first aid kit for young babes. If you’re unfamiliar in this area, ask your local health store to support you with common remedies for your family.

Naturopathic lollipops or lozenges for sore throats
Naturopathic remedies for chills, fevers, aches and the like
* Immune boosters such as multi vitamins
* Cold cloths for fevers
* Vaporiser for supporting deep chest coughs and blocked noses, with aromatherapy oils
* Tissues
* Thermometer and oximeter – always reassuring and great tools to provide information to Healthline
* Gel eye masks for headaches
* Natural chest rub
* Pain relief for your child, usually obtainable from your doctor.

If you are worried about your child, call Healthline on 0800 611 116: for trusted health advice, treatment and information about what to do next. You can tell them your child’s symptoms and they will advise you on what you can do at home, or if you need to see a doctor – very reassuring!

New Zealand has a great range of natural remedies that can soothe all manner of symptoms and pains and all are safe for young children!

New Zealand company Kiwiherb have a brilliant remedy called De-Stuff for Kids, which helps clear noses and ears and any congestion. The formula is made from organic ingredients, is alcohol free and can be used for all ages.

Another New Zealand company, Dolphin Clinic, have a decongestant oil which will ease symptoms such as chestiness, coughs, and blocked noses. This is simple to use – add to the shower tray and let it mix with the steam or use in a vaporiser or burner.

Viralex for Kids helps support the immune system and can help ease sore throats and the symptoms of virus or bacterial infections.

Frankie, Weleda and Kiwiherb all make natural chest rubs for delicate children’s skin – supermarket brands are harsh and contain petroleum.

A vaporiser is wonderful in children’s rooms, to humidify the air and make it easier to breathe, ease coughs and clear those noses. Be sure to keep it out of reach!

Alternatively, run a very hot shower while you bath the kids so that the bathroom is filled with steam, which helps loosen mucous.

As an alternative to the remedies above, homeopathy is an effective approach and totally safe for very young babies from birth. Aconite is useful at the very onset of a cold, but Naturopharm (another New Zealand company!) make several complex remedies such as Coughmed and Coldmed which can effectively ease specific symptoms. Homeopathic remedies cannot be used with other remedies as they are so sensitive, and they need to be stored in dark, cool places, but you will be amazed with the results.

NZ made Tui Throat and Chest rub will help clear noses and ease coughs and pains, and Weleda also have a Chest Rub to relieve congestion and soothe coughs. Many parents swear by rubbing these balms onto the soles of feet of sick children!

Comvita and Weleda also offer traditional style elixirs and there are several brands of lollipops which contain either soothing ingredients such as propolis for sore throats, or homeopathic remedies to ease coughs or promote sleep.

Finally, work on boosting the immune system with Floradix Kindervital, a supplement of vitamins and herbal extracts that kids want to take!