Cold symptoms are tough to manage at any age, but for kids, they can really be miserable. If you think your child has a cold, start by taking him or her to an after-hours pediatrician to get an accurate diagnosis and treatment recommendations. You can help your little one cope with a cold at home with this advice.
Try Saline Drops
If congestion is making breathing a pain for your child, try saline drops to encourage mucus to move out of the nose. Simply put a drop or two of saline solution in each nostril and then use a bulb syringe to suction out the saline and mucus. You can repeat this up to four times per day to ease some of the congestion your child is experiencing. Saline drops are especially helpful in kids who are not old enough to effectively blow their noses. If you have a baby who is nursing or bottle-feeding, treat him or her with saline drops to make it easier to eat.
Dehydration is common in kids who have cold, especially when they have fevers. When your child is dehydrated, it makes symptoms like congestion linger even longer. Pedialyte and other clear fluids can help your child increase his or her hydration. For older kids, diluted fruit juice, sports drinks, and flat sodas are all better choices than water, since they are absorbed more quickly when your child is dehydrated.
Break the Fever
In most cases, a fever is a sign that your child’s body is fighting an infection and is not dangerous, but that doesn’t mean it can’t make your child extremely uncomfortable. If the pediatrician gives you the OK, treat your child’s fever with an over-the-counter medicine to help him or her rest easier. Cool washcloths can also help.
At Pediatrics After Hours, our pediatricians can provide urgent care for everything from cold symptoms to sports injuries. When your child needs emergency pediatric care in the DFW area, come to one of our four convenient locations for fast treatment without the ER price tag.