Remedies for a Coughing Baby

Updated July 19, 2017

When a baby is coughing, it affects their comfort, sleep, eating and well-being. What makes it even harder is that the baby can't describe what else they are feeling. A cough in an infant can be caused by several different things ranging from sinus drainage, an itchy throat or a common cold to an ear infection or acid reflux. One thing is for sure--helping to soothe and stop the baby's cough will make both the baby and you more comfortable. Try these safe, easy home remedies to help calm a baby's cough.

Breathing Easier

Baby menthol ointment works well to stop a baby's cough and help him or her breathe better. Make sure to use a menthol ointment specifically made for babies. Eucalyptus oil is also a great rub for soothing a cough. Rub either onto the baby's chest and/or back. Never put any ointment or oil near the baby's mouth or eyes. Give the baby a warm bath and add baby vapour bath soap or eucalyptus oil to the bath; this allows the baby to breathe in the vapours and helps relieve the cough. You can take a bowl, fill it with hot water and mix in one teaspoon of menthol ointment or eucalyptus oil, then soak a washcloth in the liquid. Wring out the washcloth and wait until it is lukewarm to place it on the baby's chest; this warms the chest and throat, releases vapours and helps to break up any congestion in the chest.

Soothing Suckers

Sucking on something to soothe and moisturise the throat will help relieve a baby's cough. There are baby cough lollipops that can be purchased over the counter that have a stick so you can hold them in the baby's mouth while the baby sucks and swallows medicine that will soothe his or her throat and stop the cough. A frozen Popsicle with electrolytes is good for a baby to suck on and helps with any pain in the throat caused by coughing. Take a clean washcloth, soak it in drinking water, then place it in the freezer for a few minutes and let the baby suck on it. The key to this remedy is the moisture and swallowing, as both will help to stop the baby's cough.

Keep Baby Comfortable

When you have a cough, there are many things that can make it worse, and the same is true for a baby. Letting your mouth or throat get too dry and being exposed to chemical smells like incense, air fresheners, cleaning products, cooking fumes and smoke can all exacerbate a cough. Try to keep these smells out of the area where the baby is located. If you have an air purifier, vaporiser or humidifier, use it in the baby's room. Make sure to keep liquids going down the baby's throat. Don't overheat the baby with too many blankets or heavy clothing. Keep pets away from the baby until the cough is gone. When the baby sleeps, try to keep him or her partially upright, like in a chair or swing, instead of flat on his or her back. Use a bulb syringe to clean out any mucus from the baby's nose because a runny nose will make a cough worse. Using these remedies along with any doctor recommendations will aid in bringing a baby faster and safer relief.

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About the Author

In the hot desert of Arizona, Nadia Benavidez has been studying hearing instrument science since 2002. After leaving a clinical practice, Benavidez has put her talent to work writing informative articles related to health and wellness. Currently Benavidez is working on her first book.