Cold and Flu season is practically upon us. You may have already succumbed to the first stuffy nose of Autumn. Today we will reveal our “Pregnancy Awareness Month® Mom Approved” secrets on how to fight a cold. Who knows, you might even increase your probability of success in preventing a cold from attacking your home and family.
Mom’s know that colds are no fun, and they can last FOREVER! Seems like there is nothing slower than the pace of a runny nose. And if you are pregnant, ugh! Most of the OTC medications that you may have used in the past are off limits, check with your medical provider before using any medication when pregnant. For babies and toddlers, even children, same thing, before you buy any cold medicine from the drug store, talk to your pediatrician. Dr. Greene has blogged about concerns that some OTC decongestants might not work that well on babies and children, and can pose a potential overdose risk. Read more about that here.
Below are some of our tips, and although we aren’t doctors or nurses, we share some kitchen table wisdom. Our secrets revealed – prevent a cold, cure a cold.
Tips from Moms when you have a cold:
- Rest – it’s restorative
- Chicken soup – that’s code for hydrate with: water, juice, caffeine free tea, broth. A homemade popsicle works for toddlers and kids. Increase nursing or bottle intervals with your baby. Fluids should break up mucus.
- Moisture - use a vaporizer (cold or hot mist), this is for adults and the kiddos. I wrote a cool post about this last flu season, check it here.
- Vitamin C (check doses for children with your doctor), you can take an Emergen-C pack to boost, and you mix it with water so you hydrate and add C simultaneously – Woot! Oh, and they make versions for children – Double Woot!
- Probiotics have been shown to reduce the length of a cold, and even to prevent one. Say wa?! Another blog post from our P.A.M. Advisor, Dr. Greene on the evidence supporting using probiotics to fight a cold.
- Echinacea and Homeopathics – we have zero data to support this (I’m sure there is some, but I won’t be citing any here), we tend to reach for it within the first 48 hours of symptoms and believe it helps. (For Echinacea some brands have children’s versions that are alcohol free, preggo moms can use that too. BTW, Homeopathics are FDA approved, check the packaging and even better, talk to a qualified homeopathic practitioner for suggested remedies).
- Blow you nose – tissue, nasal nettie, and the nasal aspirator for babies: get the mucus OUT before it thickens, settles in and creates an infection.
Tips from Moms to Prevent a Cold:
- Hand washing – with real soap and water, if all else fails waterless soap will do
- Probiotics – daily during Flu & Cold Season (October thru March) – Check out Dr. Greene’s blog on the topic, also hyperlinked above.
- Rest – remember, it’s restorative (this includes making sure babies and toddlers get their naps and a full night’s sleep)
Again, we are just mom’s here at Pregnancy Awareness Month®. We aren’t doctors and we don’t even play one on TV. So, talk to your medical provider, do some reading on your own, and heck, ask your mom or grannie. And share with us, What is your favorite cold remedy? What do you do to prevent a cold?
Benjamin Franklin – “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” (I think he’s quoting his mom!!!)
Alisa Donner, MSW, LCSW
Co-Founder of Pregnancy Awareness Month®
“I’m a mom, social worker, yogini, synergist, and have “the gift of gab”, basically I enjoy connecting the dots and being of service to people.”