Winter illness will likely hit your home some time over the next couple of months. Today I wanted to share two products I have around my house that help prevent winter illness but also turn supportive if and when it hits. Plus the new way I am managing cough!
First up, is Oscillococcinum. Say what?!
Oscillococcinum is a homeopathic medication I learned about a few years ago from a Functional Medicine pediatrician, Dr. Elisa Song.
Homeopathy is a medical system that has been around for over 200 years. The philosophy is to help relieve symptoms and stimulate healing using the principle that like cures like.
Homeopathic substances are very small amounts of natural substances (plants, animals, minerals) that are diluted, can be used on a wide variety of ailments and can be individualized based on the symptoms you are having.
They are safe for pretty much everyone (although I always recommend talking with your healthcare provider):
- All ages (babies to elderly)
- Pregnant or nursing
- No side effects
- No interactions with conventional medications or herbal remedies
- No contraindications with pre-existing conditions
Oscillococcinum comes in a little vial and we take a vial once per week (kids included) as a preventative measure during the winter. Additionally, if we are around someone that is ill, we will come home and take it or if one of us develops symptoms, then the rest of us take a vial.
Additionally, this is great if you develop any cold or flu like symptoms. Dr. Elisa Song, a Functional Medicine Practitioner, recommends taking one vial per week as a preventative measure and then when symptoms arise, to take 3 vials over the course of the first 24 hours. She reports that some trials show a 63% improvement in symptoms within the first 48 hours and a reduction in illness duration!!
My kids actually like doing this vitamin because they taste good, so no fighting your kids with something else!
Next up: Xlear Nasal Spray
Xlear is a nasal spray composed of xylitol and grapefruit seed extract which are great at fighting germs. We use this nightly to help clear out our nares before bed, because germs can take 12-24 hours to colonize. Simply spray two times in each nare and then blow the nose.
It is safe to use and not addictive, so can be used multiple times throughout the day, if needed. We make sure to increase our use if we have been around someone that is ill.
Additionally, if we are congested this is great. When my kids get up in the morning if they are congested, I use this to help clear out all the gunk from overnight.
On a side note, I recently learned this can be helpful in preventing ear infections.
How I Support Cough.
I am not a huge fan of cough syrups in kids. You want them to cough up the mucus that is hanging out and not suppress that. With that said, cough can sometimes interfere with sleep. I don’t know about you, but I feel my kids can not cough all day and then the second they hit their bed its constant!
A hot shower before bed is great to support a cough. Additionally, I use a humidifier with Breathe essential oil (not all humidifiers allow adding essential oils).
I also have an essential oil chest rub I apply. Using a 4 oz mason jar I add 40 drops cypress, 35 drops orange, 25 cedarwood and coconut oil until filled.
At about age four I upgrade their chest rub. I spray two squirts of magnesium spray, into my hand, then add two drops of Breathe essential oil and two drops of Frankincense essential oil. I then squirt some fractionated coconut oil in the palm of my hand and rub this all over their chest. If they are deficient in magnesium this could make them itch, so consider adding more oil or lotion on top and I find that helps. (also consider sneaking in while they are asleep and doing this).
If you need good quality essential oils, snag those here
Over the age of one, raw honey has also been shown to help with cough.
How do you manage winter illness in your home?
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