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Treating Cold Symptoms at Home

Treating Cold Symptoms at Home

Treating Cold Symptoms at Home

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Treating Cold Symptoms at Home

in Children 0-4 Years Old

When sick it, is always good to increase fluids and rest.

Symptom control is the primary treatment of viral upper respiratory infection (colds), but appropriate treatment at home may differ depending on the age of your child and what symptoms are present.

Over-the-counter medications, such as cough suppressants, lozenges, and decongestants, should be avoided in children under 4, as they are considered potentially unsafe, ineffective, or both.

Congestion/runny nose/cough

  • 0-3 months old
    Nasal saline drops with suction, cool mist humidifier.
  • 3-12 months
    Nasal saline drops or spray followed by suction, cool mist
    humidifier. Sitting next to a steaming shower to breathe in
    the warm, steamy air.
  • 12-24 months
    The same 3-12 months, but you may also use ½ teaspoon of
    honey to help with cough. (honey should never be given to
    children under 12 months of age due to the risk of botulism).
  • 24-48 months
    Mentholated rubs (Vapor rub), in addition to nasal saline/suction,
    humidifier, sitting next to steamy showers, and honey.

Fever/fussiness/pain

  • 0-3 months old
    At this age, a fever is a potential emergency, and you should seek medical care immediately for a fever of 100.4 or greater.
  • 3-6 months
    Acetaminophen (Tylenol) only along with close follow-up
    with your pediatrician.
  • 6+ months
    Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or Ibuprofen (Motrin/Advil) for
    6-12 months.

Ibuprofen should not be given if upset stomach, vomiting, or signs of dehydration are present.

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