10 Ways to Fight Colds in Toddlers


This Winter season has been a rough one in our household. All three of us have been sick but our toddler has particularly struggled. He has caught one illness after the other, most of which have been colds and flu, with seldom a break before the next illness hits. After a few numerous doctors visits I now have compiled a comprehensive list of over the counter treatments that you can use for your little one. Please note that I am NOT a medical professional and that I still recommend that you chat to your pediatrician before administering any sort of medicine.  


  • Zinplex Junior


  • A multi-vitamin: we alternate between Vi-daylin and Creche Guard


  • A probiotic. Our doctor recommended upping the dosage of this should your child need antibiotics. We use Creche Guard probiotics and our little one loves the flavour.

Creche Guard Probiotic

  • Saline nose spray. You get the kind that is appropriate for babies and toddlers. We use Flo Baby Saline Nasal Spray. Initially we bought the nasal drops by mistake and I definately prefer the spray.

FLO_Baby_Saline_Nasal Spray

  • Echinacea drops: Check this isn’t already in your multivitamin and up the dosage if your child gets sick. I must admit we did give up on this one as the taste was bad and our child was already being subjected to a million and one other treatments. We tried Echinaforce.



  • A chest rub like Vicks or Karvol: You get some that are specifically designed for babies and toddlers. My child normally HATES massages but he loves having Karvol rubbed on his chest. We currently use Karvol.

Karvol chest_rub

  • Humidifiers with eucalyptus oil in them. Just please be careful that  your child doesn’t get their hands on the eucalyptus oil.
  • Cough syrup if your little one has a cough. Check with your pharmacist which is most appropriate for your child’s age. I won’t lie that I have avoided this so far mostly because I remember taking this as a teen once and was high as a kite (without meaning to be and while using the correct dosage) and so I generally avoid this.
  • There are products that you can use to help loosen mucus collecting in your little one’s chest. Chat to your pharmacist for their recommendation and dosage. This was a big help for our little one. Just one tip though – it does mean your child will be coughing the mucus out of their lungs so best not to give this to them directly before bedtime. We made that mistake and it really was not pleasant for the poor child.
  • Try chest physiotherapy. This really helps get all of the gunk out of the lungs and helps prevent the chest from becoming even worse. We went to (my sister) Carin Kinnell at Walker Physiotherapy in Rondebosch(021 685 3600). 


I also wanted to share the following with regards to fever:

“If your child has a temperature higher than 38.5 °C and this is making them uncomfortable or miserable, paracetamol or ibuprofen can be given to help ease any discomfort.

Paracetamol or ibuprofen might reduce your child’s temperature, but the aim is not to bring their temperature back to normal. A fever helps the body’s immune system to fight infection.”

I found this here. It is a very useful article about treating a fever. I have recently come across numerous articles that have said not to try bring down a fever using medicine like paracetamol but to rather give them paracetamol if the child needs it to feel comfortable. I must admit that I was advised by numerous well-meaning people that it was crucial to use these medicines to bring the temperature down to normal. I will be discussing this with our pediatrician the next time we meet because all my most recent research suggests that this is not an appropriate or good use of the medicine.

I have not added this in the list below but perhaps the biggest reason my child is finally getting better is because we finally made the decision to quarantine him until he had no only recovered but actually had a chance to build up some immunity again.

Has your little one been sick recently? Are there any treatments that you swear by?


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