Little Ills Need a Little Nurse

About every 3 months or so, I can usually guarantee that my son will get some sort of upper respiratory yuckiness.  It usually begins with a runny nose, then progresses to an ear infection, then follow that up with a cough that seems to last forever.

He has terrible nasal allergies, but we have been fortunate to find a Rx nasal spray that has relieved most of those symptoms.  But a week or so ago, the nasal drip started and it wouldn’t go away.  A trip to the doctor was our next step once the cough started.  We found out he had an ear infection. So, they sent us home with an antibiotic to battle the ear infection.  But since he is only 2, he cannot have any cough medicine…sigh.

That night was absolutely terrible!  He didn’t sleep hardly at all, because of the coughing fits.  We, as parents, feel so helpless when our little ones aren’t feeling well.

I did some research the next day about how to help a little ones cough.  I kept coming across this little tip about putting menthol rub on the bottom of your feet.  There is absolutely no shred of research to back up that this works, but if you’re a parent, you will try anything to help your children feel better.  So, being the whimsy woman who I am, I decided to give it a try.

That evening I broke out my cold fighting arsenal: saline spray for his nose, the infamous blue booger sucker, the humidifier, and the Mentholatum in the green jar.

We did our typical routine–bath, books and songs.  Then I began the cold remedies…

  • I plugged in the Vicks humidifier with the Vicks Vapo Steam added to the water.
  • Saline and suctioned his little nose.
  • Gently massaged his little chest with the Mentholatum rub
  • Finally, I slathered the bottom of his feet with the Mentholatum Rub.  Then put a pair of socks on him.

After he was asleep, he coughed for about 5-10 minutes.  Then….silence.  Ahhhh, sweet silence!

Around 3 in the morning, I heard him cough again.  I went in to check on him.  He had taken off one of his socks.  I put more of the Mentholatum on that foot and put the sock back on.  No more coughing the rest of the night!!

Now, I don’t know if it was the foot trick, or the humidifier, or a combination of everything, but all I know is something helped him sleep better.  He was a much happier kid the next day, and that’s good enough for this momma!

Usually his coughs will last about a week before getting better.  But after using this routine for 3 nights, the cough was gone!  That’s proof enough for me.  I am keeping this in my medicine cabinet and will have to try it on the next cold that darkens our door.

An added bonus with the Mentholatum Rub is that you can use it on mosquito bites!  It’s suppose to reduce the swelling and take away the itchiness.  Plus, it soothes minor skin irritations like sunburns, scrapes and scratches.  You can also use it for muscle aches.  Who knew?!  I wonder what other “miracle” products I have in my cabinet?

Vicks Vapo Rub & Mentholatum both recommend using their products on people ages 2 and up.  I am in no way a Dr. and these are my opinions.  Please consult your Dr. before giving this a try.