8 Tips to Soothe Your Child’s Cold


If you’re anything like me, you know the moment a sick bug is about to strike. A sudden waking-through-the-night streak. Irritability. Excessive whining. Zero coping skills.

In our house, we may not do so well at preventing illness {toddlers are filthy little creatures who dislike sharing everything but germs}, but we sure have mastered soothing illness. I’d even go as far to say that we have become experts in the comfort department. Sickness is part of childhood, so we should at least embrace the extra cuddles and help our littles the best we can by soothing their aches and pains.

I, of course, am far from a medical expert. However, I have spent an embarrassing amount of time in our pediatrician’s office. {In fact, I told her at our last visit that I had a suitcase and sleeping bag in the back of my car so that we could move in for the winter.}

Between over a dozen colds, a handful of sinus and ear infections, and 2 cases of RSV, we’ve become skilled, well-oiled robots when it comes to soothing and lessening the side affects of colds with our kiddos.

Here are eight tried and true ways to help lessen the blow of a child’s pesky, miserable cold ::

Soothe a Cold

1. Warm Bath. Anytime we call to talk to the nurse {a.k.a. my winter bestie}, we begin the conversation by saying, “yes, we’ve given her a warm, steam bath”. because that’s the first thing she’ll ask. but the hope here is that the steam will help loosen and open up the airways a bit – helping little ones to breathe better.

2. Cool Mist Humidifier. So we keep one of these bad boys running at least half the year. we try to change the filter at least once a month and give it a good rub down with vinegar to keep mold at bay. humidifiers help with the dry air in winter and especially help create moisture for little ones who are struggling to breathe. we even take ours on trips with us. they’re that essential.

3. Tilt bed//Extra Pillow. We use wooden blocks at the head of the crib for a tilt affect anytime we notice the beginning signs of a cold. The tilted crib props them up and helps so that all that respiratory crud doesn’t settle in deep. And for our toddler, we just give her a pillow to prop up for the same effect.

4. Vick’s on Feet. {Check with your doc on this one}. We’ve always put Vick’s Vapor Rub on our kiddos’ feet. the thought is that the feet absorb the mentholatum, which opens up the airways.  we have found it to work wonders and help with little coughs.

5. Honey. This is one of the oldest tricks in the book. and let me tell you, it works. we give our toddler spoonfuls of honey all the livelong day when she’s sick. it really helps to control a cough, and it soothes the throat. not to mention, it helps curb a case of the sickie-whines.

6. Nose Sucker//Saline. Out of everything on the list, i swear up and down by a good nose sucker. something where you actually do the sucking – like a nose frida. and yes, i agree. it’s the most disgusting thing on the planet. but until you’ve experienced a little one struggling to breathe and the power of a little saline and a lot of sucking, you cannot judge me for using this contraption. because it works. and it gets them better quicker and lessens the symptoms. i pinkie promise.

7. Boogie Wipes//Vaseline. All that nose wiping. ouch! we sure love boogie wipes and vaseline to help with sad, chapped little noses.

8. Wine. Because let’s be honest. after all that nose-sucking, you deserve it mama.

What are some of your tried and true cold remedies for kiddos?

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Angela Green
Angela is the founder of Wichita Mom, the premier parenting website and community for local moms. Wife to her high school bestie, mom to two girls, and native Wichitan, she is thrilled to be raising her family in her hometown after telling her family for years she "would never move back". She is a strong advocate for mental health, believes in the power of community, and walks the talk of "babes supporting babes". She is a self-proclaimed connector, enthusiast of many things, cheerleader of moms and women, and recently converted homebody.


  1. You need to try essential oils. Works wonders for our family-this has been our healthiest winter to date. Even when we did get sick the oils helped relieve the cough and congestion. And they are amazing for seasonal allergies!

    • Thanks Cassie! We actually just got into Essential Oils. So far, no noticable differences. Maybe we need to be well and start with a clean slate first and then use for preventative? Ready for sick season to be over!

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